Wednesday 29 November 2023

William H. "Bud" Schmidt

    Ever since I woke up this morning I have been worrying, because I couldn’t think of anything to blog about.  After I got done with my painting, I busied myself in my soup making, hoping that a blog ideas might come, then I got a text telling my that my dear “Uncle Bill” died in his sleep last night, he was the ripe old age of 98.  That was certainly not the sort of blog that I had been hoping to write.

    My Uncle Bill featured large in my childhood.  He and my grandparents, ran a commercial greenhouse and farm within walking distance from our house, and I spent a great deal of time there, having adventures playing in the barn, feeding the farm animals, and sitting on the farm equipment.  We kids loved to spend time in his bedroom, playing his rock and roll 45’s on his record player.  He was a bachelor at the time, and he often took us kids to the movies.  He loved big budget Westerns, with their sweeping landscapes and majestic soundtracks.  I credit him with instilling both my love of the West and music in me.  I always loved it when he would play honky-tonk piano pieces on my grandmother’s stately piano.

    Although Bud was a farmer, his love was to take road trips to what seemed like exotic locations to us kids.  He drove to Alaska, the Canadian Rockies, and also to Mexico.  He fixed the first “Mexican” food (something else I love) for our family after his trip to Mexico.  His vacations were major events in his life, and he loved being far from his home in Indiana, to spend time in the mountains of the Tetons, or closer to home, in the Great Smoky Mountains.

    He was always a compassionate and generous man, and later in life he donated hours working for the Food Bank and also Habitat for Humanity projects.

    Bud and his wife Emmy,  became the center of all our family festivities and gatherings for years.  When Emmy died in 2015, I worried about Uncle Bill, but he stoically carried on with his life alone, and I was surprised to catch him watching cooking shows on PBS, as he made his way independently.

    Bud’s health had begun to fail over the last few weeks, and we were happy to have a FaceTime call with him four days ago.

    Uncle Bill had been such an important influence on my life, and know all of those who knew him, will certainly be saddened by hearing of his death.

    Below is a painting I did of Bud and Emmy.   I called it, "Hoosiers".



  1. I remember that painting from looking through your work. Nice of you to remember them in that way and your stories. :)

  2. Of course , you have my sympathies. Sounds as he did as he wanted with his many years on earth. Wonderful.