Donald W. ‘Don’ Schmidt

Donald W. ‘Don’ Schmidt, 87, of Merrill, passed away Friday, August 18, 2023, at Marshfield Medical Center-Weston. Don was born March 29, 1936, in Wausau, son of the late Wilbert H. and Margaret E. (Barthels) Schmidt. He married Joan Geiger June 30, 1956, they were happily married for 67 years. They met at a dance and enjoyed dancing for many years of their life. Don worked hard throughout his life, doing it all for his family. He was employed by Marathon Electric (Regal Beloit) for 43 years, where he was a machine operator. He later worked on the prototype line which built new design motors from start to finish. Once a motor proved to be successful it was moved to mass production. He really enjoyed the challenge this job gave him. Don retired on May 1, 1998. In their early years of retirement, Don and Joan traveled the western portion of the United States and central and eastern Canada. Don had many interests and talents ranging from genealogy, woodworking, fishing, hunting, logging, farming, ginseng farming, beekeeping, maple syrup production, and vegetable gardening. He was proud of building his and Joan’s first house at the age of 23, with the help of his family. They spent 15 wonderful years in this home. Don and Joan then purchased the farm and moved to the country to better accommodate Don’s outdoor interests and hobbies. He continued to work a full-time job throughout this entire process, teaching by example, a good work ethic for his children.

Don is survived by his wife of 67 years, Joan Schmidt; children, Lee (Lois) Schmidt and Karen (Barry) Schleif; and grandchildren, Jeremiah (Amy) Schmidt, Bonnie (Daniel) Krueger, Erica (Casey) Linnell, Laura (Matthias) Rabelo, Sara (Brandon) Seubert, and Christa Schleif. In the past 5 years Don and Joan were blessed with 10 great-grandchildren, Ava Schmidt, Lane Schmidt, Ruben Krueger, Breanna Krueger, Charlie Linnell, Corbin Linnell, Lincoln Linnell, Lena Rabelo, Naomi Rabelo, and Oliver Seubert. He is further survived by his sister, Carol Jablonski; brother, Carl (Arlyle) Schmidt; sisters-in-law, Janice Geiger, Marlene Behnke, Stefanie Geiger, Bonnie (Gilbert) Slivicke, Sue (Daniel) Fluegge, and Beth (Kent) Fluegge; and numerous nieces and nephews. Don was preceded in death by his parents, Wilbert and Margaret Schmidt; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Joseph and Catherin Geiger; infant son, David Schmidt; infant grandson, Matthew Schleif; brother, James Schmidt; sister-in-law, Gloria Kleman; brothers-in-law, Anthony Jablonski, Gerald Geiger, Dennis Geiger, Jerome Behnke, and Daniel Kleman.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 A.M., Friday, August 25, 2023, at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Merrill. Father Mariadas Vallabhaneni will preside. Burial will take place at Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau. Visitation will be from 4:00 P.M. until 7:00 P.M. Thursday, August 24, 2023, at the Taylor-Stine Funeral Home, Merrill. Online condolences may be made at

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