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Donal Ray Schmidt
August 13, 1933 ~ September 22, 2023 (age 90) 90 Years Old
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Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel. Let us remember with thanksgiving what God has done through his servant Donal.
Donal Ray “Don” Schmidt was given life by his Creator and was born on August 13, 1933, on his parent’s farm approximately 13 miles outside Olney, Texas in Young County, Texas. He was the 9th child of William Robert Schmidt and Margaret Myrtle Schmidt. He was reborn as a child of God in the waters of Holy Baptism. He was united in holy marriage to Mary Frances “Frances” Montfort on January 24, 1959, and they were blessed with 64 years of married life together. On September 22, 2023, at the age of 90 years, God called Donal home to heaven. He is survived by his loving wife, Frances; Sons: Donal Ray Schmidt, Jr. and his wife Sloane of Comanche County, TX; Derek James Schmidt and his wife Kelly of Calhoon County, TX; Denis Lee Schmidt and his wife Terri of Cleburne, TX; Grandchildren: Grace Kathryn Mueller, and her husband Timothy Mueller; Claire Lea Schmidt; Donal Ray Schmidt, III; James Derek Schmidt, and his wife MacKenzie; Hannah Lee Schmidt; William Harris Schmidt, Dinah Marjorie Devening; and Great-grandson: Timothy Wendell Mueller, IV.
Coach Schmidt or just Coach to the thousands of young men and women who knew, loved and respected him enjoyed a long and successful career in athletics and education. A state champion athlete in high school, he attended Texas Tech University where he was all-conference going both ways. He was the 6th round draft pick (67th overall) of the Baltimore Colts in 1956 where he started on defense. (Of note, he was a rookie with the legendary Johnny Unitas.) After being drafted by the US Army and completing boot camp, the Army assigned him as the head coach and player for an exhibition football team in France during the Korean conflict. After service, he was traded to the Dallas Texans which became the Kansas City Chiefs. He coached one year at Texas Tech before becoming a high school football coach because he did not wish to travel and chose to stay home with his wife and new son. He ultimately coached two state championship football teams and a runner-up. He won many district championships. He also coached several state championship track teams. Many of the athletes he coached played major college football (including one of his sons) and a few played professionally. Several also attended US Military academies as players. He was a long-time director of the Texas High School Coaches Association. He is in several halls of fame.
In 1990 he retired as the athletic director and head coach of one of the largest high schools in the state of Texas. He and his wife moved to De Leon, Texas where they took over operation of the family’s ranching and agriculture interest. In 2002 he and Frances built another home in Rockport, Texas where they spent many happy years enjoying their children, grandchildren and great grandson.
Don Schmidt was an avid lifelong hunter and fisherman who loved saltwater fishing with his family and friends. He knew and understood coastal and offshore fishing from Brownsville to Galveston and fished for years on his and Frances’ boat aptly named “Time Out”.
Coach Schmidt obtained his master’s degree in Texas History from Abilene Christian University. During his life he served as the president of several Lutheran Missouri Synod Churches.
Visitation on Friday October 6, 2023, from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Lacy Funeral Home, 1380 N. Harbin Dr., Stephenville, TX 76401, 254-968-2102. Please send all flowers to Lacy.
Donal R Schmidt’s funeral will be held at Faith Lutheran Church in Stephenville, Texas on Saturday October 7, 2023, at 11:00 a.m. He will be interned at his family’s ranch in Comanche County, TX approximately 20 minutes from the church.
Immediately afterwards his burial at 2:00 p.m., in remembrance of him and more importantly at his insistence, a party with live music and food will be held on the ranch at his home. All individuals attending the funeral or friends of the family are invited to the celebration and are asked to RSVP to one of his sons, grandchildren or Oscar at Lacy Funeral home at 254-592-3148. A map to the ranch will be provided at the church or through Lacy Funeral Home.
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away; blessed be the name of the Lord. We give thanks to God our Father through Jesus Christ, our Lord, for our brother Donal.