Dr. Wyman Carl Schmidt, born September 9, 1929, passed away peacefully on December 21, 2018 after a long life characterized by love of family, music, career, and his maker. He was born and raised in Ocheyedan, Iowa, where his parents Carl E. & Ida Schmidt farmed. A love of music unified the large Schmidt clan and Wyman sang from an early age, both in the Lutheran Church and as part of the Schmidt Quartet, singing barbershop harmonies with brother Cline and cousins Donald and Allen. They performed extensively until Wyman left to serve his country in US Air Force intelligence during the Korean War. During his 4 years of service he met and married his wife Patty (Clark), with whom first child Roxi was born on Ellsworth AFB in Rapid City, SD. There also, he met 3 fellows as part of the USAF “Metronomes” Barbershop quartet. The four - Al Pitts, Don Richmond, and John Cook became lifelong friends, and, though geographically dispersed, met and sang well into their 80’s.
Wyman credited the GI bill with the initial opportunity to pursue his education and passion for forestry. He achieved a Bachelors, Masters, and PhD at the University of Montana, and studied at Yale University, Idaho State University, and South Dakota as well. He enjoyed an incredibly happy career as a Forest Ecologist, and ultimately led the Forestry Sciences Lab at the University of Montana and, in his final USDA position, was Project Leader for the Forestry Sciences Lab at MSU in Bozeman. He did extensive research, taught, lectured, and conducted joint research projects with colleagues and international scientists, travelling extensively. His research and many publications are still in use by scientists, many of whom he taught or mentored. Following retirement, he became Scientist Emeritus for the U.S. Forest Service. The Wyman & Patricia Schmidt Family Scholarship at the University of Montana offers young forestry students support as they pursue their education.
As his education and career progressed, he and Patty built their young family with the births of Carl in Pocatello, ID, Roland in Missoula, MT, Marty in Rapid City, SD, and Kurt in Missoula. As a priority, the rambunctious clan could be counted on to be active in the Lutheran Church, where they often skidded in slightly tardy for services, and Wyman’s voice rang clear in the choir. He and Patty planned regular and treasured family vacations and, once empty-nesters, continued to enjoy travelling throughout the US and the world together.
A natural leader, Wyman served as president of Lutheran Churches in both Missoula and Bozeman as well as Barbershop choruses in both cities, initially establishing the Bozeman Chord Rustlers after relocating there. He was a jolly fixture at their Tater Pig booth at Bozeman’s annual Sweet Pea Festival. Following retirement, he was active in the Bozeman Senior Center, acted as President, and thoroughly enjoyed friends there, especially on trips they made to China, Australia, New Zealand, and Africa, as well as performing with the Geriactors, where he said he played a darned good rooster. He served as president of the Sons of Norway, where he and Patty claimed they actually enjoyed lutefisk.
Above all, Wyman treasured family, and the Schmidt home was a welcoming place with room at the table for family, friends, colleagues, exchange students, and plenty of opportunities to share a hearty laugh. He loved people and celebrated them, always interested in their lives and ideas. His joyous, perpetually optimistic attitude permeated every gathering.
Wyman was recently honored with the Bozeman PRIME award for those who have made a difference to our community. When interviewed, he said that looking back, the theme of his life might be characterized as harmony – through a career as an ecologist seeking to understand and aid in a harmonious natural environment, through the joy of the harmonious gift of music, through the harmony with his Lord through religious faith, and ultimately through loving relationships with his family and friends.
Wyman was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 57 years, Patricia (Clark) Schmidt; Parents Carl & Ida Schmidt; Siblings and spouses Sylvester (& Mary) Schmidt, Lorraine (& Charles) Narvell, Cline Schmidt, and Ruth (& Charlie) Brown; Brothers-in law Charles Rush, Lanny Myers, Bill Clark, & John Clark. He is survived by: His children Roxi (Rick) McCloskey Morris, Carl Schmidt, Roland (Leslie) Schmidt, Martin Schmidt, and Kurt (Julie) Schmidt; Grandchildren Aspen Gonzalez, Megan McCloskey, Collin Griffiths, Lacey Griffiths, Mykal (Clayton) Gernaat, Cameron Schmidt, Sydney Schmidt, Mariah (Kasey McManis) Schmidt, Hunter Schmidt, Shealyn Schmidt, Nolan Schmidt, and Brynn Schmidt; Great grandchildren Addison Teusink, Copper Gonzalez, Cord Gonzalez, Heath Gonzalez, Braxton Griffiths, Aden Gernaat, Greta Gernaat; Sisters-in law Evelyn Peterson, Peg Hauk, Evelyn Rush, Jean (Tillie) Myers, Sharon Dodge, & Kathy Furry, and numerous treasured nieces, nephews, & cousins. Special thanks to the special people at Birchwood Assisted Living, First Care Health, and Bozeman Health Hospice for their kind care during this past year.
Funeral Services will be held Saturday, December 29th at 11 a.m. at First Lutheran Church in Bozeman, followed by a reception at the church. A private family interment will be at Sunset Hills Cemetery at Lindley Park in Bozeman. In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made in Wyman’s name to University of Montana Wyman and Patty Schmidt Family Endowed Scholarship in Forest Ecology and Silviculture at College of Forestry, 32 Campus Drive, Missoula, MT 59812 or the Bozeman Senior Social Center at 807 N. Tracy Ave, Bozeman, MT 59715.
For Live Streaming please go to this link and click
on FLC Live and Bible Study Broadcast and "click" half way down website page on right side.
Saturday, December 29, 2018
Starts at 11:00am (Mountain (no DST) time)
First Lutheran Church
Followed by a reception at the church. For Live Streaming please go to this link and click on FLC Live and Bible Study Broadcast and "click" half way down website page on right side. <a href="https://firstlutheranbozeman.com/community/index.php/ministry-worship/live-worship-and-bible-study-broadcast"></a>https://firstlutheranbozeman.com/community/index.php/ministry-worship/live-worship-and-bible-study-broadcast</a>