Merelyn Schmittel, 85, passed away in Cortez on August 4, 2014. Merelyn was born April 4, 1929, near Saguache, Colo. to Wilbur Hermann Johnson and Margaret Jane Keller Johnson. She married Jack Glenn Schmittel, her husband of 54 years on May 18, 1950, in Alamosa, Colo. Merelyn grew up in the mountains near Saguache and moved with Jack to Durango in 1953 where they raised their family; relocating to Cortez in their retirement.
Merelyn loved the mountains of Colorado and the Arizona desert. She spent much of her time exploring the far reaches of these areas with Jack during their lives. She took an avid interest in learning the names of the birds, flowers, mushrooms and trees and identifying these throughout both areas. Merelyn and Jack often disappeared for the day or a weekend just to spend time with nature. She enjoyed crochet and needlework and created many pieces as gifts for family and friends. She always appreciated pretty photos, flowers and trinkets. She took pleasure in time spent with her children and grandchildren and shared about each of them with great pride.
Merelyn is survived by her three children, Robin (Donna) Schmittel of Mancos, Susan (Roger) Hillmeyer of Tucson, Ariz., Barbara Davis of Phoenix, Ariz.; sisters, Constance Schmittel and Marjorie Pier; five grandchildren, Kendra (Justin) Gapp of Cortez, Sean (Sierra) Hillmeyer of Eugene, Oreg., Adam Davis of Phoenix, Ariz., Katelyn Hillmeyer of Durango, Kyle Davis of Phoenix, Ariz.; and three great-grandchildren, Beau, Heath and Travis Woodman of Cortez. She was preceded in death by Jack; her granddaughter, Brianna Schmittel; her brothers, Wallace and Wilbur Johnson; and sister, Helen Davey.
Private services for the family will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society.
Arrangements are being made through Ertel Funeral Home. For further information or to send condolences, log on to www.ertelfuneralhome.com and click on the obituary section.