- Klaus Dieter Schmidt died at home in Brooklin, Maine, on February 2, 2017, at age 86. He would have laughed to know he shared his day with a groundhog. His sense of humor was one of his many sterling qualities. Born May 8, 1930, he experienced a disastrous childhood and young adolescence in Hitler's Germany.
In December 1944, his family and his uncle's family made a failed attempt to escape to Switzerland. However, he and three younger cousins did make it safely into that country. There he was picked up by a Swiss family (the mother was American) who took him in as a foster child. After five years there, at age 19, he finished high school and immigrated into the United States, with the help of his American foster mother. He was sponsored by my family here who were friends of his Swiss family. He and I were married six months later, June 28, 1950. He loved being in America with all its vitality and optimism, after the despair and misery he experienced in Europe. He flourished both personally and professionally here, and was forever grateful for the opportunity afforded him. He had a fine career, first in business, including creating a manufacturing company which hired many employees, and then in academia. He earned a Ph.D. to qualify to become a professor at San Francisco State University. He was also Associate Dean of the School of Business. In 1985, it was his idea that he and I should move to Maine, where we have lived for 31 years in what had been an old boatyard. It has been a wonderful life here, living literally on the water. Here he wrote his autobiography, Spy For Life.
Klaus is survived by me, Lynda, his wife of 66 years; and his two daughters, Karen Calley and Claudia Lewis. He is also survived by four grandchildren, Megan and Courtney Lewis, and Christopher and Katie Calley.
He was a charming, engaged, accomplished person, with a warmth and enthusiasm for life that was a pleasure to live with.
May he rest in peace.
No services at this time.
Published on  February 23, 2017