Monday, July 04, 2011

Good-Byes Aren't Easy

When I last posted, I was helping one of my older sister's raise money for Race For The Cure, partly in celebration because she is winning her battle with breast cancer.

Sadly, my beloved Dad lost his battle with metastatic lung cancer on May 28, 2011. He fought bravely; stoically even, and always with the humor with which he raised us five kids. Dad never wanted to be a burden to anyone, or inconvenience anyone, even when his pain was at its' worst. He treasured his kids' accomplishments, loved his grandchildren and adored his great-grandchildren. Trust me - there are a bunch of them!

This was the text of my Dad's obituary:

Werner L. Schnieders, 77, of Mansfield, died Saturday, May 28, 2011 at MedCentral Mansfield. Born April 19, 1934 in Andrup, Germany, he was the son of Hermann and Rosa (Honigfort) Schnieders. Werner worked at the Ohio State Reformatory and retired from MANCI. Werner was a good man with a great sense of humor. He was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, Council 4448 and Sons of Herman. Werner was a servant to the community ~ he was a Red Cross blood donor, taught Red Cross swimming for many years, taught kids to drive and was a grandfather figure to many neighborhood children. He enjoyed following the Cleveland Indians and The Ohio State football teams. Werner was very kind and generous to everyone he met and was a wonderful husband, father and grandfather who will be greatly missed.
He is survived by his wife, Ingeborg (Knopp) Schnieders whom he married February 12, 1955; a son, Rudolf Schnieders of Ashland; four daughters, Rosemarie (Charles) Elrod of Mansfield, Ursula (Jeffrey) Hunter of Fredericktown, Karen Yockey of Toledo and Christa (David) Puterbaugh of Toledo; grandchildren, Andrew (Rebecca) Elrod, Audrey Elrod, Lynn (Joshua) Leist, Lori (Jeremy) Hysell, Christopher and Anna Yockey, Nicholas and Aaron Puterbaugh, Justin Hunter and Anthony (Emily) Hunter; great grandchildren, Katelynn and Jacob Leist, Hadley Shuck, A.J. Elrod, Alex Milligan and Laken Hunter; three brothers, Herman (Margaret) Schnieders of Berlin Heights, Ohio, Franz Schnieders and Hubert (Marianne) Schnieders all of Germany; and a sister, Maria Berns of Germany. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother, Heinrich Schnieders and an infant sister, Hildegard.
Friends may call from 5-8 p.m. on Wednesday, June 1, 2011 at the Diamond Street Home of Wappner Funeral Directors, 98 S. Diamond Street, Mansfield where Vigil services will be held at 7:30 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 10:30 a.m. Thursday, June 2, 2011 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church by Father Nelson Beaver. Burial will be in Mansfield Catholic Cemetery at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Mary’s Catholic Church or the American Cancer Society.

My Dad was generous; a giver even when we didn't have much to give. Dad and I taught swimming lessons together. We loved to watch the Indians games together - even the night before he died we had the game on in his hospital room. (He was aware enough to be disgusted that the Tribe lost to Tampa Bay! LOL) Dad was thrilled that I got to go Scuba diving for the first time in February. He had been a long-time diver, doing searches and recoveries for drowing victims long before Sheriff departments had their own dive teams.

There are too many people to thank for helping me over the past five weeks. If you've held my hand, wiped my tears, listened, called, sent prayers, come to the funeral home or funeral, sent a card or flowers, or made a donation to the American Cancer Society, sent an email of support, posted condolences on FaceBook or Plurk... I thank you.

We all know you're still watching over us Dad. We've gotten the "angel nudges." And we know love never dies.