It is with deep sadness that the family of G. John Schonfelder announces his passing on Tuesday, March 10, 2009. John died suddenly at his home with his daughter and care-givers from Carewest Sarcee by his side. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him but most notably by his children, Karen, Don and Rick Schonfelder; daughter-in-law Bev, granddaughters, Lindsay and Kristy; and great-grandson Caleb. Also left to mourn his passing are family and friends in Canada, Germany and Arizona. John was predeceased by his wife and mother, both named Herta.
John was born in Ober-Schönbrunn on November 26, 1925 enjoying a happy and loving childhood growing up in pre WWII Germany. At the age of 15 he joined the Merchant Marine with a desire to travel and experience as much of the world as possible. His dream was cut short one year later when John’s ship was captured by the British within sight of the sinking battleship Bismarck. John spent the remainder of his teen-age years serving as a prisoner-of-war in Gibraltar, Scotland, England and eventually Canada. He often commented that being captured and sent to Canada was the best thing that could have happened to him. He enjoyed his time in Canada so much that he volunteered to remain until the last repatriation of German prisoners-of-war on December 31, 1946. John tried to adapt to life in post-war Germany but with the support of Canadian sponsors he returned to Canada in August 1951, settling first in Ottawa and a year later heading west to Alberta.
John arrived in Calgary in 1952, where he met his wife Herta and was embraced by her Czechoslovakian family. John and Herta had three children and in 1961 they settled into the newly developed community of Lakeview. John helped to sell many of the homes in the early communities of south-west Calgary. In 1962 he decided that a change in career was in order. Hired by London Life, John spent twenty-eight years as a dedicated and successful insurance salesman, always respected for his professionalism and caring nature.
John and Herta loved travel and the outdoors, inspiring their family to enjoy Calgary’s Rocky Mountain playground and the world beyond. John was an avid walker and his early morning foot-prints around the Glenmore Reservoir laid the ground work for what is now known as the Glenmore pathway system. When next you wander in the area, take a moment to stop and rest on the bench honouring John’s pride of country and gratitude for the blessings that Canada provided.
Always a positive and out-going personality, determined to carry-on despite his physical disabilities, John will be missed by all who knew and loved him. Everyone on earth has a treasure that awaits him. Wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure….The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho.
Those wishing to pay their respects may do so at McINNIS & HOLLOWAY’S Park Memorial Chapel (5008 Elbow Drive S.W.) on Tuesday, March 17, 2009 from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
A Celebration of John’s life will be held at Lakeview United Church (3023 – 63rd Avenue S.W.) on Wednesday, March 18, 2009 at 1:30 p.m. Forward condolences through www.mcinnisandholloway.com. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of John to The Calgary Humane Society, 4455 – 110th Avenue S.E., Calgary, AB T2C 2T7, Telephone: (403)205-4455, www.calgaryhumane.ca, to the Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (http://www.ccfcanada.ca/DonateNow/) or to Calgary Health Trust Fund – for Carewest Sarcee (Comprehensive Community Centre), Suite 800, 11012 MacLeod Trail S.E., Calgary, AB T2J 6A5, Telephone: (403)943-0615, www.thetrust.ca. His family will be forever grateful to the staff at Carewest Sarcee for their continued love and care and for the smiles they brought John over these past seven years. Thanks also to the paramedics and firefighters of Station 20 whose support is gratefully acknowledged by John’s family.
In living memory of John Schonfelder, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES Park Memorial Chapel, 5008 ELBOW DRIVE S.W. Telephone: (403) 243-8200.Print This Obituary & Condolences