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formerly of Stanfordville - William F. Schmeelk, 88, a resident of Montgomery County since 2010 died peacefully at the Potomac Valley Nursing Home on Wednesday, May 7, 2014. Born in Brooklyn, New York on August 9, 1925; he was the son of the late Thomas Leroy Schmeelk and Barbara Koellner Schmeelk. As a child he enjoyed hanging around the docks of Carnarsie and family time on Ruffle Bar Island where the family harvested oysters. After high school, he served in the Navy from January 31, 1944 through May 17, 1946. After an honorable discharge from the service, he worked in the family tug boat business, Schmeelk Brothers Marine Towing & Transportation Co. On April 27, 1952 he married the love of his life, the late Marion Karoline Brand, who predeceased William in 1989. Upon marrying Marion, William moved to Stanfordville, NY in Dutchess County where he resided for nearly 60 years. In Stanfordville, William worked for H.O. Penn Machinery, Inc. where he serviced and repaired auxiliary electrical generator sets throughout the Hudson Valley for such establishments such as IBM, Vassar Brothers Hospital, as well as various banks, prisons and the Indian Point Nuclear Plant. He also had numerous friends in the Hudson Valley who would bring to him various machines in all states of disrepair and through cleverness and ingenuity he would fix them all, even if it meant fashioning a new part in his machine shop. After he retired, he bought a boat in Maryland and sailed it up the intercoastal to the Hudson River where he kept it at the Poughkeepsie Yacht Club. During retirement he also enjoyed square dancing and continued tinkering in his machine shop.
In 2010 he relocated to Boyds, Maryland to be closer to his only child, Karoline Marie Anders, nee Schmeelk and his granddaughter, Anna Marie Anders and son-in-law, Roger Anders. Additionally, he had two siblings, Margaret (Marge) Schmeelk Teelon and Thomas Leroy Schmeelk, Jr., both of whom pre-deceased him in 2009 and 2012 respectively.
Reflecting his life-long love of boats and clean water, in lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, whose newsletter he enjoyed even after a diagnosis of vascular dementia and whose efforts to restore oysters to the Chesapeake was of genuine interest to William. Interment will take place at Arlington National Cemetery (Date and Time to be announced).
Published in the Poughkeepsie Journal on May 16, 2014