Barbara “Barb” Jean (Hansen) Schmeichel was born in Brule County, Torrey Lake Township, S.D. on May 23, 1928, to Edward and Carolyn (Brown) Hansen. She died on February 12, 2018 at her Walnut Street Village apartment with her children at her side.
She graduated from Kimball High School in 1946. She attended South Dakota State College and graduated in 1953 with a bachelor of science degree in home economics and a minor in English. She held home economics teaching positions at Armour High School, Marion High School and Freeman Academy from 1953 to 1958. While teaching at Armour High School, she met Edwin Schmeichel, who was the brother of her roommate Gladys.
On Aug. 5, 1956, she married Edwin at American Lutheran Church in Huron, S.D. They were blessed with three daughters: Joan (Tim) Peterson, Janette (Dave) Ryken and Julaine “Jaye” (Steve “Charly”) Waltner; three sons: Don (Kara) Schmeichel, Rev. Duane (Sheila) Schmeichel and Dean (Jessi) Schmeichel. Her family was very important to her, and she cherished her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Barb was a loving and devoted daughter, sister, wife, mother, aunt, grandmother and great-grandmother. She and Eddie raised their family on their farm near Freeman, S.D. She raised chickens and cared for her gardens, flowers and fruit trees. Barb loved to bake, and enjoyed making breads and baked goods for her family and friends. She also loved to sew and made clothes for her children when they were young and for her grandchildren. She shared these talents and her love for them with her grandchildren.
Barb was a devout Christian woman. She loved her Lord and Savior and faithfully served Him throughout her life. She was an excellent role model for her children and grandchildren, and shared the truths of God’s Word with all of her family.
Barb, like Abraham, believed God, and God credited it to her as righteousness. She taught her family to live a life of service and set the example to work for others as for her Lord. Whether it was a family project, helping her parents, family, friends, or someone in need, Barb used her talents and love to help others. Her family learned the value and joy of honest labor and serving others from her.
She shared her love with her family and friends. Her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, extended family and friends all felt her love. She stayed connected with them through her many handwritten cards and letters. Her beautiful penmanship will be missed by all who received her notes and letters. She never missed sending a birthday card to family and friends.
Eddie and Barb enjoyed traveling when they were able. They visited Florida, Seattle, Phoenix, New Orleans, Virginia, New York, Minnesota and even made a trip to visit relatives in Germany in 1997. They loved to attend their grandchildren’s activities whenever possible.
Barb moved from their farm into the Walnut Street Apartments in September, 2014 after Eddie moved into Oakview Terrace. She enjoyed the company of her friends at Walnut Street Village and resided there until her death.
Grateful to have shared this life with her are her daughters Joan Peterson and husband Tim, of Osakis, Minn.; Janette Ryken and husband Dave, of Freeman; Jaye Waltner and husband Charly (Steve) of Freeman; sons, Don Schmeichel and wife Kara, of Federal Way, Wash.; Rev. Duane Schmeichel and wife Sheila, of Madison, Ala.; Dean Schmeichel and wife Jessi of Sioux Falls, S.D.; grandchildren: Kristian Peterson of St. Paul, Minn., Sara Seefeldt and husband Andrew of Maplewood, Minn., Joel Waltner of Sioux Falls, Taylor Mochel and husband, Jonathan, of Christiansburg, Va., Erica Goodwin and husband Kyle of Kent, Wash., Jennifer Samson and husband Lee of Puyallup, Wash., Catherine Borck and husband Matt of Milwaukee, Wis., Heather, Patrick and Philip Schmeichel of Federal Way, Wash., Zachary and Matthew Lyle, Joshua Dempsey and Keoni Parks of Atlanta, Ga.; great-granddaughters: Jasmine Samson, Frome, England, and Ramona and Iris Borck of Milwaukee, Wis.; and many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Barb was preceded in death by her husband Edwin Schmeichel, parents Edward and Carolyn Hansen, her siblings and their spouses, her father-in-law and mother-in-law Christ and Mary Schmeichel; daughter-in-law Laurie Schmeichel; and grandson Alex Schmeichel.
A memorial service was held at the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Freeman Monday, Feb. 19, with Pastor James Shrader officiating. Interment was in the Freeman City Cemetery. Pallbearers were Joel Waltner, Kristian Peterson, Lee Samson, Andrew Seefeldt, Jonathan Mochel and Patrick Schmeichel.