On May 3, 2020, Dr. Jeffrey S. Schmidt, loving husband, and father of two daughters, passed away peacefully at the age of 77. Arrangements have been entrusted to Starks & Menchinger Chapel. Those wishing to leave an online condolence may do so at www.starks-menchinger.com.
Jeff was born on Sept. 7, 1942, in Detroit, to Karl and Julia Schmidt. He attended the University of Detroit and graduated from the University of Detroit Dental School in 1965. Following, he served in the U.S. Army Medical Corp as a Captain, stationed at Ireland Army Hospital, Fort Knox, Ky., from 1965 to 1967. On May 15, 1965, he married the love of his life, Meredith (Micki) Hall. Together they had two daughters, Christine and Jennifer, and six grandchildren: Jessica, Jack, Hallie, Hannah, Matthew and River.
Following his military duty, he and his family moved to Southwest Michigan, making their home in St. Joseph, where he joined the dental practice of Drs. Fred and Bill Rahn before opening his own practice for many years on Niles Road until he retired in 2012. He was a guest lecturer in forensic dentistry at the University of Michigan and a member of the Michigan Dental Association, where he co-founded the Forensic Dental Identification Team and served as a Team Section Leader in 1987.
Jeff received numerous fellowships and public awards, holding appointed positions with the City of St. Joseph, the County of Berrien, the State of Michigan and the Federal Government. Additionally, he was selected to serve in the United States Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team (DMORT) post 911.
Jeff expressed that he could not have achieved these accomplishments without the women in his life, including: his mother, Julia; grandmother, Baba; wife, Meredith; daughters, Christine and Jennifer; and his dedicated dental staff, who were like family to him. He was also extremely grateful to his father, Karl Schmidt, who taught him the importance of family and hard work and made all this possible.
He is survived by his sister, Linda Walker; brother, William Schmidt; his wonderful nieces and nephews; wife, Meredith; daughters, Christine Thome (John) and Jennifer (Deidre); and his grandchildren, whom he adored.
Jeff actually wrote this obituary himself. His friends know how much he enjoyed planning his trips, and they will chuckle when they realize he got to plan his last one. A celebration of Jeff’s life will be celebrated with friends and family at a later date.