Jack W. Schmidt was born on September 19, 1927 and died on July 25, 2015 at age 88.
The world seems a bit off without him in it… this Jack of all trades who was an actor, writer, cryptologist and a financial analyst for the aerospace industry.
In Jack’s career as an actor, he appeared on Broadway in a short-lived musical spoof of Agatha Christie’s “Ten Little Indians,” and off-Broadway in “Little Shop of Horrors” as well as “The Fantasticks.” In film, he was an extra in the bank heist scene in Woody Allen’s “Take the Money & Run.”
Jack was a formidable man, in spirit and stature. He was tall, but thin and frail in recent years and walked with a cane. His frailties were the antitheses of the strength he wielded in his voice and stories. The timbre of his voice resonated in a room when he read aloud and commanded the attention of those who had the pleasure of hearing him speak.
The stories Jack wrote were as much about his life and travels as they were about the people in his stories who shared his experiences. From his time spent in Mexico with literary peers, to witnessing H-Bomb blasts in the New Mexico desert, which he chronicled for the Air Force, and then later wrote about in story form — I was there with him, a passenger on his journeys, seeing the world as he did through his eyes and his words.
Jack was a gentle giant of a man and had a heart as large as Mexico. He was an inspiration to our writing group and always supportive. His talent and kindness will forever remain in our hearts.
In July, we lost an elegant writer, speaker and friend. A selfless man who lived big and dreamed bigger.
Carpe diem. Seize the day -Love Jack, he wrote in a 2009 email, a phrase that captures the way in which he lived his life.
We miss you, Jack!