In Memory

David Schmidt

David Schmidt

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03/07/15 04:39 PM #3    

Chris Wall


Somebody posted a picture a few days ago of David from the NTE days - a cheerleading in his Phipottamose t-shirt in the stands at a basketball game.  Great shot.



It's exactly how I remembered him.  Enthusastic and genuine, but full of irony.  Silly, but in a serious way.  Look at the passion in his face.

I think he lived up on Greenwood or Elmwood in Wilmettte - a few blocks from where I lived.  

We called him Davy "the Kraut" Schmidt with great affection.  He must have skipped a grade or two - he was younger...for the class.  A smart guy.  He liked to laugh.  Also, he could make people laugh.  No small feat.

In my life I realize I've grown enormously appreciative of people who like to laugh, serious people who don't take themselves too seriously.  Lee Sandlin was another guy who was like that - in a very different way.  He just passed a couple months ago. It is a loss to the world when smart guys with senses of humor go.  

I knew that David had become the Mayor of Park Ridge.  I kind of had mixed feelings about it.  Good, because I like it when funny guys find serious work.  Bad, because it's Maine South territory, for God's sake.  


03/08/15 11:10 AM #4    

Mary Sayre (Eriksson)

Dearest Dave


I know you are gone but I will always remember you with fondness.   At NTE, you cheered the athletic teams and rallied everyone to do the same. You were the first person to greet me (with a big hug) at the NTE 30th reunion.  You were the best mayor we've had in Park Ridge and probably the only mayor who rode his bike around town, collected meatloaf recipes from the local ladies, participated in the garden walk, supported Kalo, balanced our budget and created transparency. That's just a few of the wonderful things you did. You seemed to know everyone in NTE and that was also true in Park Ridge. I am honored to have known you and thankful for all you did to make life better for those around you. You were fun, smart, witty and lived life to the fullest. I will miss you. Most of all, I will miss your big "bear hugs." 


Mary Sayre Eriksson

03/08/15 12:09 PM #5    

Henry King Lahey

Just a few thoughts on this day March 8, 2015 about my departed friend Dave Schmidt.

It is with regret that I will not be able to attend the wake going on today or the Funeral service scheduled for tomorrow.

Such a sudden and unexpected passing. Hopes and heartfelt prayers today for everyone. I am feeling such a sense of loss. Am having a hard time trying to visualize what New Trier East in the early 1970's would have been like without Dave. I mean what the hell is a "Phipottamose" ? I remember the 1973 Football season....I didn't play a whole lot...which was not an easy thing for me. But it didn't stop Dave and a few others from starting up my own cheering section.... "We want Lahey, We want Lahey..." and I could always make out Dave's voice at the top of all that noise. Don't know what I did to deserve that but I am forever grateful for his larger than life spirit and energy.

Dave overcame a lot of adversity and I need to learn from that example today. I admired that he became a successful Lawyer...and later a succesful politician...Mr. friend. Even though he was a Republican and even though he pulled for the Red Wings...he was my friend. He had seemed to really find a happy space in recent years. Many pictures of a very happy Grandpa on Facebook and many great adventures around the world. Wouldn't have thought that the 40th Reunion last October was the last time I would ever see him.

So Dave...may the wind be always at your back... I will miss you. You were my friend.


Henry King Lahey

03/08/15 04:11 PM #6    

Charlie Davis

Sorry to hear this news about Dave ! I saw him at the reunion and then in my place of business. Laughed a little that day ! He will surely be missed. It seems we're losing one classmate a week. Prayers go out to his family ! Also to us who are still here. God bless ! RIP Dave Schmidt !

03/08/15 11:32 PM #7    

Jodie King

Dave you will be missed. I'm so glad I got to see you at our 40th! My heart felt sympathies to your family. 

03/09/15 09:02 PM #8    

Theodore Ahlem

I can't add much to what has already been said but I, too, remember Dave as a friend to everyone.  A small memory I have is talking to him after he got busted by administration for leading the "Give me a Q!" cheer and being told to cut it out...or else.  I think we were all thinking "4Q" to school admin at lunch that day.  God bless your family and your memory, Dave.  My high school years were much fuller because of you.

Ted Ahlem

03/10/15 09:09 AM #9    

Rob Broms

I had the pleasure of knowing Dave in my advisory.  He loved sports and it was a common topic of conversation.  He was the ultimate Detroit sports teams fan, and would never waiver no matter how hard I tried to covert him.  Dave was jovial, fun and enthusiastic.  I especially remember our Phipottamose Club cheering section at Football and Basketball games.  I looked forward to every one of those games.  It was a blast and hilarious.  And of course, the ringleader at these games was Dave.  I will greatly miss his smile and laugh.


03/10/15 09:24 AM #10    

Wade Keats

Wow what can I say about David Schmidt the Kraut that has not already been said.

I met David through friends at a Party at Kathy Burns house and after that it was an incredible journey through New Trier. He was the one that encouraged everyone to go to games and cheer on every sport we had including the Hockey team. I remember being wuth him and he said to me lets go cheer on the Swim team at the State finals in Evanston. I had never been to a swim meet but there we were cheering them on.

David and I went into summer business together sealcoating driveways for Beer Money. I remember him slipping and falling before it had dried he ended up looking like Al Jolson. I also remember the party's we had at my house on the third floor. I told my Mother I was going to have a few guys over for Pizza and word got around NT and everyone showed up. David manned the door and would only let in the girls we knew. My mom almost killed me for that party.

Even my Parents loved David he ended up stayed at my house for a few weeks durring the summer that his mom moved to Iowa. My mom washed his clothes everyday because he was a very respecful guy. After Coe College we connected again and I was fortunate enough to be in his first wedding.

Over the years David and I always kept in touch through the Gees. We always had banter back and forth about sports Detroit Vs. Chicago. I was very fotunate to go with him to a Michigan Vs. NU game a couple of years ago which was a great experience. He and I always attended Tigers Vs. Sox games together and we had planned to go to Detroit to watch a series this summer. I always contributed to his campaign for Mayor of Park Ridge even though I live in Winnetka I liked what he stood for!

I was stunned by his sudden death. Its very hard to lose a friend like David who means so much to everyone.I was honored to be a Pallbearer at his funeral yesterday it really meant a lot to me.

Farewell my friend until we meet again. RIP

Your friend,


Wade Keats (Vadle)


03/11/15 08:59 PM #11    

Beverly Loudin

I have missed most of our reunions but I certainly remember Dave and his Phipottomoose (sorry if I have the spelling wrong) cheering section.  Mostly they complimented the cheerleaders and it was always great to have someone cheering back at us!

My sympathies to his family and friends.

Go Indians!

Beverly Loudin

03/12/15 09:55 AM #12    

Steve Sasaki

While I didn't know Dave well, and don't even recall if it was senior year, but a group of us took the "el" to the season-ending White Sox, day game.  We arrived early and the White Sox were not doing well so the stadium was relatively empty.  During batting practice there were great opportunities for chasing balls that went into the stands.  

Before the start of the game, Dave happen to be standing at the wall on the first-base side of the infield.  A batter tapped one on the ground toward Dave, and close enough to reach, even though the wall didn't make it easy.  He lean over to grab the ball, but unfortunately lost his balance and flipped forward, ending up on the field.  Apparently, falling onto the field was a big deal because even with a near-empty stadium, security (I recall) came and took him away.

While being escorted out he also had a noticeable limp.  During the mishap he had hit his ankle, which turned out to be broken (I believe).  I don't think they allowed him to stay for the game, and he may have waited to ride the train back with us...  

On a personal note: I ended up with the season-ending, walk-off home run ball, but being a die-hard Cubs fan, it was like the Twilight Zone episode where the young guy ends up in the afterlife with an elderly couple and their music, their heaven - his hell.

Anyway, I was heartened to see Mary Sayre Eriksson's post and read how Dave continued to rally people and make differences, for the good.  In high school and it sounds like all his life, Dave was able to make meaningful statements with his actions, all while having fun in the process...  I'm sure, even after becoming "a part of the system," he still, never would have thrown a kid out of baseball game for falling onto the field.    


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