Melvin L. Schmidt

  • Born: October 30, 1928
  • Died: February 16, 2018
  • Location: Dubuque, Iowa

Behr's Funeral Home

1491 Main Street
(563) 582-3297
Dubuque, IA 52001
Tel. (563) 582-3297

Tribute & Message From The Family

Melvin L. Schmidt, age 89, of Dubuque, was called home peacefully at 8:00 p.m., on Friday, February 16, 2018, at home, with his loving wife by his side. To honor Melvin's life, funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m., on Wednesday, February 21, 2018, at Holy Spirit Parish, Holy Trinity Catholic Church, 1701 Rhomberg Avenue, with Rev. Dwayne J. Thoman officiating. To celebrate Melvin's life, family and friends may visit from 2:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m., on Tuesday, February 20, 2018, at Behr Funeral Home, 1491 Main Street. Burial will be in Mt. Calvary Cemetery.

Melvin was born on October 30, 1928, in Dubuque, Iowa, son of Reinhardt and Helen (Doerr) Schmidt.

Melvin started working at the age of 15 with the Dubuque Packing Company, as a ham boner, where he would remain a loyal employee for the next 46 ½ years of his life, until his well earned retirement which finally arrived in 1989. Melvin and Ora Miller were the true definition of childhood sweethearts and soul-mates; finding one another at the innocent young age of 12, while ice skating at Comisky Park in December of 1940. They developed their friendship over the years, and eventually were united in marriage as husband and wife on June 18, 1949, at Holy Trinity Catholic Church. Melvin built his bride a brand new home and together they filled it with love, and 9 adored children, who always knew they were his whole world. Melvin also had an adventurous side; he loved boating on the Mississippi River, camping with family every weekend, and traveling the country in his Winnebago. He was quite proud of holding the record for buying the most brand new Winnebagos off the assembly line; 11 in total. Melvin took great joy in taking his family and friends, his beloved Shih-poo, Isabelle, and any extra kids lucky enough to have the chance to ride along, to all 50 states, almost every National Park, and multiple visits to Florida and Disney World along the way. In their later years, Melvin and Ora would enjoy their status as snow birds in Yuma for over 25 years; throwing horseshoes, dancing, swimming, attending concerts, making countless memories and many new friends along the way, all the while soaking up the warm Arizona sun. Melvin was always the life of the party, serving up his famous Waterballs and Tanqueray Gin, all the while showing Ora his everlasting physical affection through each and every day. Ora meant everything to Melvin, and he loved her passionately for 68 ½ years. All of the memories we created will last a lifetime, Dad taught us all so much and he will continue to inspire us all. Melvin was undeniably the kind of man we all strive to be, and he did it so gracefully with such a natural ease and kindness that very few of us actually possess. We will miss you everyday, and at every family gathering Melvin, but thankfully we discover real peace in our trust that the Lord definitely has you tucked securely in His loving embrace and that we will all be reunited again one day for the greatest family reunion ever.

Those left to cherish Melvin's memory include

his loving wife,
Ora Schmidt, Dubuque, IA;

his 8 children,
Terry (Sandi) Schmidt, Apple River, IL,
Deborah (Mike) Hoppmann, Dubuque, IA,
Tim (Barb) Schmidt, Dubuque, IA,
Vickie Parsons, Dubuque, IA,
Ron (Sheri) Schmidt, Epworth, IA,
Paul (Martha) Schmidt, Epworth, IA,
Sandy (Bob) Hunt, Bellevue, IA
and Lora (Todd) Perkins, Peosta, IA;

a daughter-in–law,
Liane Schmidt, Dubuque, IA;

26 grandchildren; 36 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great-grandchild;

and his siblings,
Jannan Hancock, Dubuque, IA,
Marion Richey, Cedar Rapids, IA
and Harold "Bud" Schmidt, Kansas City, KS.

Melvin was preceded in death by his parents; a son, Michael Schmidt; a grandson, Justin Schmidt; a great-grandson, Christian Lyons; a sister, Helen (Ray) Hintgen; a brother, Ray Schmidt; a son-in-law, Jim Parsons; a sister-in-law, Vernetta Schmidt; and 2 brothers-in-law, Bill Hancock and Bob Richey.

A Melvin L. Schmidt memorial fund has been established, which will be distributed among his favorite charities.

Melvin's family would like to thank Dr. Whalen, the staff at Tri-State Dialysis, and all of the care givers at Home Instead, for taking such wonderful care of Dad.


Condolence & Memory Journal


I was so sorry to hear of Melvin's passing. It's been a very long while since I seen him but I remember him having a great sense of humor and a big love for his family. Please know that you are all in my thoughts and prayers. Take care.

Posted by Jackie (Nauman) Avery - Maquoketa, IA   February 21, 2018

Your family is in our prayers and Uncle Melvin will be missed. Sorry I cannot make it to the funeral to be with you at this time.So many fond memories growing up in seeing all of you when we visited Dubuque. I remember Dad getting a smile on his face everytime we got close to Dubuque and only country music would play on the car radio. Seemed like time was too short in trying to see all the cousins. Many good times and laughter. He was always so proud of his kids and gave his best to them. Love you all.

Posted by Darlene (Schmidt) Conner - Shawnee Mission, KS - Family   February 20, 2018

You are all in ouer thoughts and prayers. Wish that Bud were able to make it to the service but he is currently unable to.

Many good memories! I fondly remember camping and spending time together as a family. It was so enjoyable hearing Bud and Melvin talk recently. They both really enjoyed it. Bud and Vernetta always enjoyed the times they got together Ora with you and Melvin. I will always remember hearing Grandma Schmidt talk about how she looked forward to Melvin driving by every day on his way to work. She so looked forward to that.

Thinking of all of you.


Posted by Tom Schmidt - Lenexa, KS - Family   February 19, 2018

Met my husband at a basketball game our of town due to one of his many road trips. I was high school friends with deb

Posted by Lavonne (Bonnie) Pfeiler - Omaha, NE - Acquaintance   February 19, 2018

Schmidt family so sorry for your loss,his memory will live on in the hearts and minds of all the people who knew and loved him.

Posted by Mark McDonald - Dubuque, IA - Friend   February 18, 2018

Schmidt Family: Please accept my deepest sympathy on the passing on your dad & husband. I knew he loved to travel and enjoy meeting people and enjoyed life. He will be missed by family and others that knew him. You will be in my prayers and thoughts.

Posted by Peggy Schroeder & Family - Dubuque, IA - Acquaintance   February 18, 2018

Sincere condolences to the Schmidt family. Many great memories of when we were kids growing up across the street from each other....

Posted by Gary Fink - Kalamazoo, MI - Friend   February 18, 2018

My condolences to the family. I truly enjoyed every moment that I spent with Melvin taking care of his little task getting up for the day getting ready for dialysis when schedule, prepare your meals, getting ready for bed, all those little stories you would tell me, your special kindness that he had. Melvin will be missed.Sharon Hauber Caregiver from HomeInstead

Posted by Sharon Hauber - Dubuque, IA - Acquaintance   February 17, 2018

Uncle Melvin , I will cherish all the memories we shared every weekend camping.It was a great childhood camping with you and I will miss you deeply. You always called me your little Laurie and I will cherish that. Rest in peace. You are our angel watching over all of us.Give Dad my love. Love Laurie.

Posted by Laurie Richey Denes - Brooklyn, IA - Family   February 17, 2018