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James Raymond Schmitt, caring spouse, dedicated father and adoring grandfather passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on January 26, 2024 following a brief battle with colon cancer.
Jim was born to Ray and Clarice (Borg) Schmitt on April 27, 1942. He graduated from Sanborn High School and entered the U.S. Navy in 1961, serving four years in Patrol Squadron 19 out of NAS Moffett Field, CA and Adak, AK. Jim’s Navy service enabled him to fulfill a childhood dream of traveling the world, all while serving his country, for which he was forever grateful.
On February 17, 1968 he was united in marriage to Paulette Brandenberg. Together they lived in several places across the U.S. as Jim worked for Boeing to upgrade the minute man missile system. In 1973, they settled in Casselton, ND where they raised their three daughters: Kelly (Patrick Cousans), Kory Schaan (Isaac), and Kathlene Shih (David).
Jim was a proud lifetime member of the NRA and an active member of the Cass County Wildlife Club. He was an avid hunter and fisherman, especially enjoying the camaraderie of hunters who gathered each fall at Cherry Lake to hunt Sandhill crane. He believed strongly in hunter education and was awarded the ND Game & Fish Instructor of the Year in 2005.
A lifelong Catholic, Jim was a member of the Knights of Columbus and ensured that his children were raised in the faith. He also instilled his love of travel and the outdoors in his children and grandchildren by initiating numerous camping, hunting and fishing trips throughout the United States and Canada.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Elaine. He will be missed by his wife, daughters, grandchildren (Brenna Schmitt; Phoenix, Bryan, and Skyla Schaan; Nora Cousans; and James, Kathryn and Lillian Shih), and his sister, Janice Schmitt.
All funeral rites will be held at St. Leo’s Catholic Church, Casselton, ND. Visitation will be from 6-7 p.m. on Tuesday, January 30, followed by a prayer service. The funeral mass will take place at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday.
West Funeral Home & Life Tribute Center