Denis Ralph Schmitz, age 72, and his wife, Mary Louise Schmitz, age 73, of Sanborn, Minn. died Friday, May 30, 2008, as the result of an automobile accident near Mountain Lake, Minn.
Denis was born March 8, 1936, in Springfield to Ralph and Loyola (Filzen) Schmitz.
He graduated from Springfield High School in 1955, and served in the US Army from July 1955 to May 1957.
Denis was united in marriage to Mary Louise LeGare May 28, 1960, at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in New Ulm.
Denis had a milk route from 1957 to 1965, and farmed with his brother, Verne, most of his life until he retired in 1993. In retirement, Denis enjoyed working maintenance for the Farmer’s Golf and Health Club of Sanborn, and wintering in Mission, Texas.
An active member of Legion Post 286 of Sanborn and St. Thomas Catholic Church, Denis also served on the Charlestown Township Board for 21 years. He enjoyed talking politics, world and current events, playing cards, golfing, and going to the “corners” for coffee. His helpful spirit was well known in the community.
Denis loved America and her freedom.
Mary was born Dec. 28, 1934, in Comfrey to Philip and Valeria (Schwendinger) LeGare.
She graduated from Fairfax High School in 1952, and attended Mankato Commercial College. Mary worked for the Brown County Attorney for three and one-half years; for a short time in Aurora, Ill. at Barber Greene Manufacturing, and three and one-half years at the Gislason Law Office in New Ulm.
After her marriage to Denis, Mary spent the remainder of her life as a homemaker and mother to her six children, and helped on the farm when she could. She was an avid golfer (three holes-in-one), and played golf and cards any chance she got.
Mary loved to bake, making cakes, caramel rolls, and hundreds of dozens of buns for graduations and special family occasions. Gardening, canning, and walking were among other favorites.
She served 15 years as chairman of the annual Sanborn Watermelon Days’ parade and was involved in many ministries, including serving as CCW president at St. Thomas Catholic Church of Sanborn.
Mary enjoyed spending time with family and friends and wintering in Texas.
Denis and Mary are survived by their children and families: Tim and wife Tami, Tianna, Tiffany, and Tanner, of Glenwood, Minn; Jeffrey and wife Margie, Kassidy, of Apple Valley; Terry and wife Theresa, Katie and Mackenzie, of Navasota, Texas; Curtis and wife Mary Theresa, Jonah, Sophie, and Hope, of Corcoran; Lisa (Linz) and husband Derrick, Allison, Rachael, and Nathan, of Darwin; and Susan (Winkelmann) and husband Lee, Makenna, Mavrick, and Mogen, of Morgan.
They are further survived by Denis’s siblings; Gladys(Feser) and husband Dick, Verne and wife Monica, Floyd, Bonnie(Schumacher) and husband Jim, and David and wife Linda; and Mary’s siblings, Cathy Samlaska, Ted and wife Marion, Dick and wife Gladys, Vince and wife Darlene, and Jim and wife Sharon; sisters-in-law Doreen LeGare and Linda Kooling; and several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Denis was preceded in death by his parents, Ralph and Loyola; sister Joyce; and sister-in-law Marilyn.
Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Philip and Valeria; sister, Sister Valeria; and brothers Joseph, Philip, Father Paul, and Robert.
Mass of Christian burial was Tuesday June 3 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Raphael’s Catholic Church in Springfield, with Father Dennis Labat celebrating the Mass. Private family burial and full military honors took place in Sanborn City Cemetery.
Visitation was Monday, June 2 from 4 to 7 p.m., with a combined rosary and prayer service at 7 p.m., and continued Tuesday from 9:30-10:30 a.m., all at St. Raphael’s Catholic Church in Springfield.
Minnesota Valley Funeral Home handled the arrangements.