Nicholas F. Schroeder


 February 29, 1932 - January 5, 2016


Nicholas F. Schroeder, 83, beloved uncle and patriarch of his family passed away Tuesday January 5, 2016  at Millcreek Community Hospital surrounded by family.
Nick was born in Erie, PA February 29, 1932, the son of the late Nicholas F. Schroeder, Sr. and Leona E. (Deutsch) Schroeder. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Rita (Carpenter) Schroeder in 1991; siblings, James, Bernard, David and Kathleen, as well as an infant sister.

Nick worked as a heavy crane operator at Skinner Engine and was an auxiliary police officer for the City of Erie. He was a devoted caregiver for his step-daughter, Dianne Carpenter for the last 25 years.
He enjoyed fishing, visiting with friends at his favorite tavern, Haggerty’s, and watching old westerns.
During warm weather he could often be seen on his garden swing in the front yard where he visited with neighbors and friends.  He especially enjoyed when his young nieces and nephews came by on Halloween to show off their costumes.
He will be loved and missed by his daughters and all his nieces and nephews.

He is survived by two step-daughters, Dianne Carpenter and Donna May-Carpenter; and many nieces and nephews.

He was laid to rest at Gate of Heaven Cemetery on Friday, January 8, 2016.


January 12, 2016

We had a memorial service at San Juan UMC  today with a dinner afterwards.

 Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again."  Martha said to him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day". Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life.  Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. John 11:23-26
I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.  Revelations 22:13
I was dead, and see, I am alive forever and ever; and I have  the keys of hell and death.  Revelations 1:18
Because I live, you shall live also.

Family and friends, we have gathered here to praise God and to witness to our faith as we celebrate the life of Nicholas F. Schroeder. We come together in grief, acknowledging our human loss. May God grant us grace, that in pain we may find comfort, in sorrow hope, in death resurrection.

Pastor Mary welcomes everyone    
Nearer, My God to Thee

Helen plays music and we sing   Amanda sings "Beam me up"


Pastor Mary talks to the congregation:

I would like us to take a trip through time and also enjoy a taste of eternity.
Sit back please, and if you can relax. Let your imagination be your guide.  Go back in  time to a day so long ago none of us can remember. It was a day that happened only once in every four years.
 It was February 29, 1932.  The scene is in Erie and Leona and Nicholas have a new baby.
The named him Nick, after his dad.

He comes into the world the way all of us do.  He looks tiny when his mother holds him.   He fits into the crook of his father's arms  His parents, their families, their friends are joyous at the birth of this tiny one, a special gift on this rare day.

This happened before so much else happened.  This happened before Nick grew to boyhood, then to manhood.   Before he met Rita and married her. Before Skinner Engine and maneuvering those big cranes, before putting on the badge of auxiliary police officer.  Before becoming a dad of twin step-daughters.  Before all the nieces and nephews.  Before swinging in his garden swing on warm summer days.

But let me tell you something.  I was not there to see it, but I believe it with all my heart: Nicholas Schroeder started out as a baby, a child, someone small and new, with an entire life ahead of him.

And he drank the glass of his life down to the bottom, like a hardworking crane operator drinks a beer on a hot summer evening.  His life stretched like some bright banner stretching across more than eight decades.  He enjoyed it: family, working, fishing, and so much else.  Now it is over: the whole delicious, dignified, precious story that got started on a wintery day.  Although small in stature, this grand man seemed far more frail recently than he was then back when he was a small bundle in his mother's arms. 

We would be excused, I suppose, for taking this evidence and deciding that Nick, the old auxiliary police officer, had only a one-way ticket: that his life was like a day, with the sunrise over Lake Erie, hours full of experience and  activity, and then a sunset late in the evening and then no more.

We would be excused for believing this, I suppose.  So much leads us to see a human life like a map unfolded, with movement from eastern sunrise to western sunset.  East is one thing, West is another, and as is often said, never the twain shall meet.

Or do they?  The priest and poet John Donne advises you take the unfolded map, that flat piece of paper, and curve it around the globe for a much more accurate representation of reality, how the world actually is.  Notice what happens when you do this. Wrapping your arms around the globe, you find that east and west, two opposite edges of the map, are forced to  touch.  The are not so far apart. They are neighbors.

Wrap the map of life around the globe, both Nick's life and your own, and you find that east and west meet and match.  The opposites touch. They are neighbors.  Death seems to sever life, but in reality it opens the way to new life, something more wondrous than we can imagine.

I would like to share with you a poem written by Charles Henry Brent  "The Ship"

I am standing upon the seashore and see a nearby ship spread his white sails to the morning breeze and start for the blue ocean He is an object of beauty and strength. I watch him until at length he is only a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky meet and mingle.  Then someone at my side exclaims, "He's gone!"

Gone where?  Gone from my sight, that is all.  He is just as large in hull and mast and spar as he was when he departed and just as able to bear his load of living freight to the place of his destination. His diminished size is in me, not in him.  And just at that moment when someone cries, "He's gone," there are other eyes watching for his arrival, and other voices that take up the glad shout "There he comes!"

That new life we imagine that is across the sea is given to us through Jesus Christ.  Its fullness awaits us after death, but we can begin to taste it now, through faith, in a hundred ways.  Jesus was born for us, he died for us, now he lives forever; and whether we live or die, we can find true life in him.

Nick's birth in 1932 happened before so much else happened for him: his rich life, his good life, for which we thank God.  Nick's death in 2016 happened before so much else happened for him: an eternity with God and God's people.

The love of God for us is visible in the cross.  It runs as bright threads through the days of life on earth. Yet it is a love too much for this life alone. It needs all the room of eternity.

My friends, eternity awaits!  But until that  time occurs for you, drink deeply of the Living Water, a water that "will become a spring of water gushing up to eternal life"

family and friends gather to remember Nick

We continued our remembrance of Nick over delicious food.

Meatballs and sauce
Rolls   Wings
Cheesy potatoes Baked Macaroni & Cheese Scalloped Potatoes
And dressings for the salads
 and wings
Salads cut carrots and celery  
trail mix lots of brownies and cookies pie
cake fruit salad creamy pudding cake
Helen helped serve and the family went first great food and fellowship


If you would like to share your memories of Nick please email me and I will post them here.


~* Memories *~


January 5, 2016
Sometimes we do not understand why our loved ones have to leave this earth,
other times we understand that the pain and problems of this earth are hard to take.
Heaven is a much better place for them, and one day we will see them again when our time comes.
Be with Brandy and family during this time.
Margaret Harrison


April 18, 2016