Donald G. “Don” Schmidtke, 77, Odebolt, Iowa, formerly of Granton, passed away on Friday, April 28, 2017, at the Horn Memorial Hospital of Ida Grove, Iowa. A funeral service was held at 10:30 a.m., on Wednesday, May 3, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Odebolt, Iowa. Rev. David W. Lyons officiated, with committal services following in the Odebolt Cemetery. Military rites were conducted by the Roose Post No. 313 of the American Legion of Odebolt.
Donald, the son of Paul and Anna (nee Krieger) Schmidtke, was born in Clark County on Jan. 26, 1940. He grew up on a farm in rural Granton, where he attended country school until enlisting into the United States Marine Corps on Feb. 13, 1957. On Sept. 20, 1958, Don married Doreen Luchterhand at Trinity Lutheran Church, Loyal. The couple welcomed a son, Chuck, while Don was stationed with the Marine Corps in California. On Feb. 13, 1960, Don was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps and the family returned to Loyal, where Don was a licensed cheesemaker. A cheese factory in Odebolt, Iowa, brought the family to Odebolt in 1962. Don and Doreen welcomed a daughter, Dawn. Don lugged beef at IBP and drove truck for local farmers before purchasing his own semi. For most of his working years, he was a company trucker and hauled for Midwest Industries and Farmland Foods. He was a volunteer fireman for the Odebolt Fire Department. During the last years of his trucking career Don became a local farmer. He enjoyed farming, and his John Deere tractors. He retired from truck driving in 1995. Wanting to keep busy, Don started driving a local school bus, positively impacting the lives of the children he transported. Don loved his collection of antique tractors and taking them on tractor drives. He also liked farming, hunting, fishing, and a ride on his motorcycle on a Sunday afternoon. His time spent with his family was especially important and he treasured his grandchildren and great-grandchild.
Left to cherish his memory are his loving wife of 58 years, Doreen Schmidtke of Odebolt, Iowa; their children: Chuck (Donna) Schmidtke of Lake View, Iowa, and Dawn (Dean Hudson) Nelson of Laurens, Iowa; three grandchildren: Deena Hudson, Dallas Nelson and Jaci Nelson; a great-grandson: Brayden Hudson; a brother: Larry (Karen) Schmidtke of Wisconsin; and many nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
Don was preceded in death by his parents, Paul and Anna Schmidtke; two sisters: Alice Wehe and Carmen Elpert; and a brother: Alton Schmidtke.
The Christensen—Van Houten Funeral Home of Odebolt, Iowa, is in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent to www.christensenvanhouten.com.