On December 22, 2015 my brother, Jeffrey Schroeder was called to his eternal home. Jeff was a special needs individual, and he was also well known in the community. Over 130 people attended his funeral on December 29, 2015. The video of his funeral can be viewed by clicking here.
Jeffrey Allen Schroeder, the youngest son of Daniel Clifford Schroeder and Barbara Ann (nee' Hankey) was born on February 19, 1957 in Wakefield, Nebraska. He entered into God's family through Holy Baptism on April 18, 1957 at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Emerson Nebraska. On June 10, 1973 he was confirmed in the Christian faith at St. Andrew's Lutheran Church in Lincoln, NE.
Jeff's life, especially in the early years, was not an easy one. As an infant, he was diagnosed as being mentally retarded due to complications suffered during birth. As a toddler, his family made two trips to Californiain successive years where he underwent a battery of tests at the UCLA Medical Center where his diagnosis was confirmed, but nothing medically could be done about it.
As Jeff entered school age, he was enrolled in the newly-formed special ed program at the Emerson Public School. It was there, under the patient and loving instruction of Anna McQuistan, that Jeff learned valuable life skills. This included reading, writing, doing simple math, and other activities of daily living.
Jeff was then placed at Martin Luther Home and School (now Mosaic) in Beatrice, Nebraska where he was part of a program for the trainable mentally retarded. This primarily involved classroom work, but it also addressed social and vocational skills.
Following his time in Beatrice, Jeff returned to Lincoln where he remained for the rest of his life. He had a variety of different jobs, such as kitchen help at the Oak Room (and a few other restaurants), and helping his friend Bill who ran the canteen at the State Capitol Building.
Jeff was especially proud of the volunteer work he did at the Library for the Blind and Disabled (part of the State Library Commission), a job he has done for the past 25 years. He was recently honored for his years of service, and became an Admiral in the Nebraska State Navy.
Jeff also worked every year at the State Fair where he emptied garbage and did clean-up work. This lasted for 24 years; until the fair moved to Grand Island and he could no longer work there.
Jeff's favorite hobby was his cameras and taking pictures, which number in the tens of thousands. He rarely left the house without his camera on a lanyard around his neck. He also enjoyed sports, especially basketball and Salt Dogs baseball. And for many years, he enjoyed playing Bingo at various places.
Jeff (with his camera) was a familiar face to many people in Lincoln. Since he couldn't drive, he was well known to the Star Tran bus drivers and passengers. He spent lots of time in the library, as well as the Haymarket, downtown, Gateway, and his favorite eating establishments like Patty's Pub, Kuhl's Restaurant, and Village Inn. And he rarely missed the festivities in Seward on July 4th.
Jeff was a very friendly person, and he would have a conversation with just about anybody. He had an inquisitive mind and would ask lots of questions. He cared about other people too, and he was known to make short telephone calls to people he knew to find out how they were doing.
Jeff's real love was the church and church activities. He knew his Saviour well, and he trusted God's promises with all his heart. Regular worship was the most important part of his life, and he would do whatever it took to attend. Jeff had a real home as an active member of St. Paul United Methodist Church in Lincoln where he found a Pastor and congregation with open hearts and open arms who accepted him just the way he was, and made him a part of their family. Church activities were always favorite topics of conversation for him. He loved going to whatever fellowship activities he could, and he was always ready to talk about the sermon he had heard.
Because of his Christian faith, Jeff did not fear death. He had experienced the death of numerous relatives, most recently that of his parents. He knew they were in heaven waiting for him, and he was ready to go join them whenever the Lord called him home. And so, on the morning of December 22, 2015, the angels came and peacefully took him to the mansion in heaven prepared for him at the age of 58 years, 10 months, and 3 days.
Jeff is survived by one brother, the Rev. Dr. Daniel K. Schroeder of Lincoln (Seward) NE; one uncle, Ralph F. Schroeder of Clear Lake, IA; two aunts, Florence Mayfield of Costa Mesa, CA and Lois Schroeder of Playa del Ray, CA; along with numerous cousins and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, The Rev. Daniel C. and Barbara A Schroeder; paternal grandparents The Rev. Dr. Martin and Florence Schroeder; maternal grandparents Ralph and Eva Mae Hankey; one maternal aunt, Elizabeth Hansen; and two paternal uncles, Konrad and Martin Schroeder.
BLESSED BE HIS MEMORY