VisitationOur Savior's Lutheran Church
Chokio, MN 56221
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Wayne "Butch" Schmitz, age 63, of Chokio, Minnesota passed away Sunday, December 31, 2017 at his residence in Chokio.
Funeral Services will be held Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Chokio with Rev. Gloria Anderson officiating. Organist will be Julene Amborn. Visitation will be held Saturday afternoon from 1:00 p.m. until service time at 3:00 p.m. at the church.
Burial will be in Artichoke Lake Lutheran Cemetery at a later date.
Wayne Charles Schmitz was born to Earl and Vera (Ostendorf) Schmitz on July 9, 1954 at Holy Trinity Hospital in Graceville, Minnesota. He was baptized at Parnell Lutheran Church rural Collis, Minnesota. At the age of five he moved with his parents to a farm site south of Chokio.
He attended and was confirmed at Synnes Lutheran Church south of Alberta, Minnesota. He attended Chokio Public School graduating from Chokio-Alberta High School in May of 1972. While in school he played in several sports. His favorite was wrestling where he wrestled heavy weight. He also played football. While in high school he started working with Duane and Betty Busch at Busch's Digging and Plumbing. He decided to continue working and eventually purchased the business from Duane and Betty in May of 1988 renaming it Butch's Digging and Plumbing. Wayne did this for twenty-five years and then retired in 1997. He was on the local Chokio Fire Department until retiring in 2005 (1991-2005). He also helped with cooking meat for the community picnic for many years starting while his dad Earl and Roy Johnson were doing it.
Wayne learned a second trade by working with Vera and Earl at Chokio Meats (Locker Plant) form 1965 to 1971. He helped with the butchering and processing, which he still did with his own meat to this date. Wayne got the bug to raise chickens from his parents. He also enjoyed barbecuing beef and pork on the spit for get-togethers.
He loved hunting, fishing, playing cards, darts and bowling. Wayne especially enjoyed spending time at the cabin with family and friends. He was fun loving and cared deeply for his family. Wayne worked with several of the farmers in the area including Steven Fridgen, Terry Tubbs and even went custom combining with Rob Zimbrick for three years. He also enjoyed helping Myron Arndt at the Tire Shop.
Wayne married Kathleen "Tiny" Nelson in September of 1976. Later he married Vicky Ritter in June of 1986. With this marriage he gained a step-son Michael; whom he taught to hunt, fish and play cards. His partner for the last eighteen years has been Penny Shelstad with whom he did many things together. He gained another son Randy and a daughter Rosalyn. Randy learned to hunt and fish and many other things from Butch. He was a loving father, brother, uncle, son and friend.
Butch is survived by his fiancée Penny Shelstad, step-sons: Michael (Mashaila) Ritter, Randy Shelstad and step-daughter Rosalyn Shelstad; three sisters: Linda Richter, Judy (Gary) Fuhrman and Evelyn Schmitz; nieces and nephews: Valorie (Tom) Paramore; Bethany Richter; Jennifer (Victor) Bridges; Marissa (Jon) Hansen; Wally Schmitz; Jody (friend Stacy) Fuhrman; Travis (Jennifer) Fuhrman; Joey (fiancée Chantelle) Fuhrman; Ginger (friend Randy) Fuhrman; Tyler (Tasha) Fuhrman; and fifteen great-nieces and nephews.
Butch was preceded in death by his parents: Earl and Vera Schmitz; brother-in-law Dennis Richter; and niece Cynthia Richter.
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