|Birth: ||Feb. 24, 1953|
|Death: ||Nov. 5, 2007|
Mr. Robert W. Schmitz, 54, after surviving an arduous battle for life, having overcome two bouts of Leukemia, passed away Monday, November 5, 2007. He was born in West Palm Beach, Florida, the son of the late Rudolph W. and Marian Near Schmitz. He had a long and well respected
career in law enforcement, starting out as a police officer with the Lake Worth (FL) Police Department, later moving on to work with the West Palm Beach (FL) Police Department, where Officers remember him as "having such an impact on those who worked with him," "watching out for the younger officers and teaching them valuable things that are still utilized today in police work," "funny, loving to have fun," and "could always be counted on to 'have your back' in the line of duty." Ever the self-motivated learner, in his spare time he became an avid computer guru back in the early '80s, long before computers were popular. After leaving the Lake Worth and WPB Police Departments, he worked as a detective with the St. Lucie County (FL) Sheriff's Department where he obtained his pilot's license and flew helicopters and small planes for the Sheriff's Office. During his lifetime, he was praised in his work by citizens and high ranking officers as "displaying courage and skill," as "a credit to the police profession," "performing admirably under adverse conditions," and "a fine man - showing kindness and compassion to people in times of hardship." For the past 17 years, he has called Cochran, Georgia, home, serving for 16 of those years as a well-known and loved Chief of Police for the City of Cochran. The Police Officers in Cochran said that he played such an important role in their lives individually and as Officers and that he forever left his imprint on the Police Department and the way they do things in Cochran. They refer to him "as family" and that they "loved him." During his last year of life he worked as an investigator with the Public Defender's office in Dublin, GA. Surprisingly, his time in Georgia brought out the country boy in him that no one, not even himself, knew existed - utilizing his skill as an excellent marksman, he took to hunting, started listening to more country music than rock and roll, and developed an appreciation NASCAR - going to the races whenever the opportunity would arise. He was a member of Cochran Masonic Lodge # 217 and he attended Antioch #1 Baptist Church of Dodge County. Survivors include his wife: Sara Schmitz of Eastman, GA; daughters: Nicole Schmitz of Charlotte, NC, Wendy L. Schmitz of Cochran and Jennifer Schmitz of Eastman; sons: Jordan Schmitz of Cochran and Taylor White of Eastman; sisters: Deborah Lynn Ellis of Lake Placid, FL and Michelle Ann Mehaffie of West Palm Beach, FL; father-in-law and mother-in-law: Warren and Brenda Yawn of Eastman; sisters-in-law: Terri D. Powell, Angela Batts, Kim Mitchell and Tonya Brown, all of Eastman; brothers-in-law: Mark Brown, Kenny Powell and David Mitchell, all of Eastman.
In 2001 he was diagnosed with Leukemia. He successfully made it through a round of treatment and thought all was well, until 2005 when the cancer returned. He endured a second grueling round of treatment followed by a stem-cell
transplant at Emory (a new way of doing a bone marrow transplant). All was looking well, except that he had a forever altered immune system after all of that... Last Monday, after feeling sick all morning, he was taken to the hospital for testing. On the way back to get a CT Scan, his heart stopped beating and they were unable to bring him back.
Antioch Baptist Church Cemetery #1
Created by: Vito
Record added: Nov 15, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 22915866