MURPHYSBORO — Joseph “Joe” Cyril Schmit, 74, passed away on Thursday, April 4, 2019, at his residence under the care of hospice.
Joseph was born April 17, 1944, on the family farm in Lisbon, North Dakota, to Edward and Cecelia (Weiler) Schmit.
He spent his first eight grades in a one-room country school and graduated from Lisbon High School in 1962. He received his bachelor of science degree in chemistry from North Dakota State University in 1966 and received his doctorate in biochemistry from Purdue University in 1971. He did post-doctoral study at University of California, San Diego.
In 1976, he was hired by Southern Illinois University at Carbondale School of Medicine where he worked as a professor of biochemistry and chair of his department the last 20 years until his retirement in 2007.
He married Cheryl Kay Lahren on Aug. 19, 1967, in Fargo, North Dakota. She survives in Murphysboro.
He is also survived by two sons, Peter (Lissa Metzler) of Henderson, Nevada, and Matthew of Carbondale; and two grandsons, Jensen of Henderson, Nevada and Xander of Carbondale. Joe is also survived by brothers, Edward (Bertha) of Davis, California, Donald (Cheryl) of Waupaca, Wisconsin, John of Salida, California, and William (Amy) of Wahpeton, North Dakota; sisters, Ellen Olmstead (Richard) of Brainerd, Minnesota, Barbara Cameron of Montgomery, Texas, and Susan Killingbeck (Keith) of Charlestown, Rhode Island. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews plus many cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Kathleen in infancy and Mary Ann Schmit; and nephew, Nicholas Schmit.
He retired from SIU in 2007 to spend time traveling and camping with friends and family. He also spent time at their lake cottage in the northwoods of Wisconsin biking and fishing.
Memorial services will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 27, in Carbondale Unitarian Fellowship with a time of visitation from 11 a.m. until the time of service on Saturday.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Murphysboro Food Pantry, SI Chamber Music Society, Hospice of Southern Illinois or SIH Cancer Institute.
Meredith Funeral Home in Carbondale assisted the family with arrangements.
To leave a story or memory of Joe, visit www.meredithfh.com.
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