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Robert K. “Bob” Schmidt

January 15, 2021

Robert K. (Bob) Schmidt, age 82, passed away on Friday, January 15, 2021, at Newton Medical Center, from complications of Covid-19. Bob was born May 21, 1938, in Neodesha, Kansas, to Marvin Schmidt and Elma Frey Schmidt. When he was only four years old, a tornado struck the family farm and took the life of his father Marvin. Bob, his mother, and younger brother Duane moved in with extended family while Elma earned her teaching certificate. He started kindergarten at age four in a one room schoolhouse taught by his mother.


When Bob was a teenager, his mother married Willard H. Regier and he gained two additional siblings, Eldon and Lois. He graduated from Whitewater High School in 1955, but was most proud of his self-declared degree from “The School of Hard Knocks.”


Bob married his high school sweetheart, Mary Lou Androes, on June 29, 1956. They shared the next 64 and a half years of joys and challenges together, and relied heavily on each other and their faith following the tragic loss of their oldest daughter, Rhonda, in 1994. Bob and Mary Lou enjoyed many boating vacations at Table Rock Lake in Missouri with Mary Lou’s extended family, several trips to Hawaii, visiting Niagara Falls, and celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary with a trip to Alaska. They rarely missed a ballgame or event that involved their children, grandchildren, or great grandchildren, and Bob enjoyed coaching when given the opportunity.


Bob knew no stranger, which served him well in his multiple sales-related jobs. Many in the community remember him as their favorite milkman in the 1960s, and his family and friends always joked that he could sell ice in Antarctica. The last 28 years leading up to retirement, he owned and operated RK’s Auto Supply. Although Mary Lou worried he would be bored upon retirement, he actually became busier than before, perfecting his golf game, joining a weekly bowling league, playing men’s slow-pitch softball with the church team, attending auctions, fishing, and working on projects at his shop. Bob held season tickets for over 50 years to the home games of his beloved WSU Shockers Men’s Basketball team, and was also an avid Newton Railers and Kansas City Chiefs fan.


An active member of First Mennonite Church in Newton, KS, Bob was part of numerous committees, volunteered with the Junior High Youth Group, chaired the FMC Caring Fund Committee for the last 10 years, faithfully ushered folks to their seats, always made sure the grass was freshly cut or snow was cleared, and routinely brewed fresh pots of coffee on Sunday mornings. He willingly and selflessly gave of his time and resources to several community programs, including Salvation Army and New Hope Homeless Shelter. He loved his family members with fierceness and generosity, and would drop everything to support his children and grandchildren, regardless of the situation. He was stubborn, loud, humorous, well-versed in sarcasm, and couldn’t get enough BBQ. Bob truly enjoyed life, not taking anything for granted and choosing to appreciate what he had been given.


Bob will be forever loved and missed by his beloved wife, Mary Lou, of Newton; daughters Roxane Pohl, Newton, Rochelle Schmidt, Emporia, Renee (Kevin) Hamm, Newton; son-in-law Von Krehbiel, Kingman; grandchildren Jared (Ciara) Pohl, Kyle Pohl, Kate (Chance) Colton, Kirsten Krehbiel, Kendra Krehbiel, Ashlynn (Trevor) Duerksen, Logan (Aarika) Hamm, and Madelynn Hamm; and great grandchildren Zane, Braden, Kenzlie, Ellie, Jax, Kinley, Braden, Caysen, Kannen, Kylen, and Blakely. Bob was welcomed into heaven by his parents, daughter Rhonda Lou (Schmidt) Krehbiel, great granddaughter Knoxley Lou Colton, brothers Duane Schmidt and Eldon Regier, and sister Lois Wiens.


Public visitation and guestbook signing will be held at Petersen’s Funeral Home (Newton) on Thursday and Friday, January 21 and 22, from 12-4 pm. A private graveside service for immediate family will be held on Saturday, January 23. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to First Mennonite Church (Newton, KS) Caring Fund or New Hope Homeless Shelter (Newton, KS). His family would like to thank the Newton Medical Center ICU medical staff for the excellent and loving care shown to Bob during his illness. The outpouring of love, support, and prayers from community members and friends has also been greatly appreciated.

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16 thoughts on “Robert K. “Bob” Schmidt

  1. Bob will definitely be missed.
    Praying that you will be comforted knowing where he is now. Love to you all.

  2. Enjoyed so many god times with Bob thru church and close friendship with Bob and MaryLou.
    He was always willing to take on many activities as pointed out in obituary. Was always a joy to be around as he never was at a loss for words with conversation. Will be missed by so many

  3. Bob was my oldest nephew and always kind, loving, and helpful! He and his brother Duane were super candle lighters at our wedding, there in Newton. Times of seeing each other after that were few and far between, but will make up when we meet again in Heaven!

  4. Mary Lou, I’m so sad to hear about Bob’s passing. He was always the life of the “party” at Grandma Schmidt’s house. He made us all laugh, especially when he ate too much of her hot mustard! Our thoughts and prayers are with you & family. Love, cousin Steph & David

  5. We send our love to you all from your cousins in California. Bob was down to earth, super friendly, and he told us some pretty funny stories when we’d see him at family gatherings. God bless you, take care of you, and wrap His loving arms around each of you.

  6. Bob & I became fast friends from the moment he walked into The Treasure Trove at 5th & Poplar where he soon became one of valued Vendors.

    My heart has been hurting for you and Bob since my husband & I were first told of Bob’s big battle with COVID-19. We had both recently come through our own personal battle with Coronavirus which gave us hope that Bob would pull through it also.

    9n Saturday, January 16th, I called the house to check on my friend, Bob. Our hearts felt broken when we received the gut wrenching news of Bob’s death one day earlier.

    We were very fond of “V-82” which was Bob’s code name at The Treasure Trove. We appreciated Bob’s cheery disposition every time he came over to work his “booth”. We are quite pleased that our paths crossed.

    Sending hugs + love to all of Bob’s.family.

    Kelly & Tony Barber
    The Treasurer Trove
    Diamond T Auctions

  7. Mary Lou, So sorry to hear of Bob’s passing! Our prayers are with you and your family! He was always the life of the party! I’m sure he’s having a wonderful reunion with Rhonda in heaven!
    Love, Janene&Rick Armbruster

  8. We all have enjoyed golfing with
    Bob at North Newton, Fox Ridge
    and Wedgewood golf courses.
    His laughter and unique sense of humor kept us all laughing as he
    cheered everyone on. He will be
    missed and remembered by all.

  9. I worked at Fox Ridge and got to know Bob well from the morning seniors tournaments. He was sweet and teased about everything especially about enough mustard for his sandwiches. I’m so sorry for your hurt hearts missing him.

  10. HOPE Home Repair learned to know Bob as chair of the 1st Mennonite Caring Fund. He partnered with HOPE for needed home repairs to several low income homeowners. His generous spirit was evident. Thank you to his family and his church family for supporting him. Prayers for you as you release him to our Lord’s Presence and cherish his many memories.
    HOPE Home Repair Board Directors

  11. I have so many pleasant memories of Bob, and will always cherish them. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  12. Mary Lou, Roxane, Rochelle and Renee,
    We are so very sorry for the loss of your husband and father.
    This time is difficult and we hope your memories of him will carry you through. Our thoughts and prayers to you and your families.
    Tom and Donna Ratzlaff

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