Joseph Edward Schmitz, 92, of John Day passed away Saturday, Aug. 12, at Blue Mountain Hospital.
Schmitz was born to Theodore and Ella (Drugan) Schmitz on July 6, 1925, in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. He served in the U.S. Navy 1943-1948. He was a hospital corpsman attached to the U.S. Marine Corps and saw action at Guadalcanal during World War II. Schmitz enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1948 and served in the Korea campaign. He joined civilian life in 1952 and worked for Northern Pump Company in Fridley, Minnesota. In 1972 he left to start his own business in farming and used farm equipment sales. He moved to Mt. Vernon in 1984. He was a member of the American Legion, the John Day Elks Lodge and the Knights of Columbus.
Schmitz was preceded in death by his daughter, Mary Jo; and friend Mary Vik.
He is survived by his son, Larry Schmitz, of Rosemount, Minnesota; grandsons Daniel Schmitz of Wyoming, Minnesota, and Derrek Schmitz, of Zimmerman, Minnesota; two great-grandchildren; and Ann Coffman, close friend.
Schmitz met life on his own terms. He enjoyed fishing, hunting, gardening, golf and playing cards. His friends will miss him. A memorial service will be held at 5 p.m. Sept. 6 at the John Day Elks Lodge. Dinner will follow.