On Tuesday, March 19th, 2019, Lieutenant Colonel David Paul Schmarje passed away in Forsyth, Missouri at the age of 82. He and his wife of 36 years, Osa, had moved there 18 months before from Lompoc, California. Born in Charleston, West Virginia on February 5, 1937, David is survived by his wife, Osa, and children Julie and Dawn Schmarje of Los Angeles, California, Mark Schmarje of Branson, Missouri, Katie Schmarje of San Diego, California, granddaughter Destiny Schmarje of Springfield, Missouri, sister, Diane Wood of Lubbock, Texas, and his stepchildren.
David was a retired Lt. Colonel in the Air Force. He entered the military in the 1960's and served his country for over twenty years, through both active duty and the military reserve. In 1964, he was awarded the Airman's Medal for saving multiple people from a burning building when an aircraft crashed on his air base in El Centro, California.
While in the Air Force Reserves, he worked for his family's business, Schmarje Tool Company, in Muscatine, Iowa as a Mechanical Engineer, before moving his family to San Diego, California. He worked at Rohr Corporation and General Atomics for many years before returning to active duty where he reached the rank of Lt. Colonel. In the Air Force, he worked at the Los Angeles Air Force Base, where he met his wife, Osa. Together, they moved to Vandenberg Air Force Base in Lompoc, California, where they raised their daughter, Katie. David was a dedicated member of his community, serving as a local Air Pollution Board Member and teaching at the local community college. After retiring from the military, he continued to work at Vandenberg Air Force Base as a civilian.
In addition to being a loving husband, father, and friend to all, he had a great love for his country, which was evident not only from his many years of service, but also in his vast bald eagle collection. He could be counted on to help at a moment's notice. With a big heart and beautiful soul, he is missed by all who were lucky to know him, but we hold dear the blessing of having had him in our lives. A celebration of his life will take place in Lompoc, California, where he was active in the community and a long-time church member. For information about the memorial service please contact either Shannon Peru at firstname.lastname@example.org or Julie Schmarje at email@example.com.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in his name to either Wounded Warriors, the Forsyth Nursing Home and Rehabilitation, 477 Coy Blvd, Forsyth, MO. 656653, or Preferred Hospice of Missouri, 910 South West Ave. Springfield, MO. 65802. Arrangements and cremation are under the direction of Cremations of the Ozarks. To leave an online condolence, please visit www.cremationsoftheozarks.com.