Written by Jessica Edwards, his granddaughter
A formidable and great man has left us recently. Alfred Schainholz, 84, passed away May 3, 2017 at home.
Born in Hanover, Germany, on January 30, 1933 to parents Adolph and Mehta E. Schainholz, he was known by many names such as Al, Grampy, Alfie, or even Dad/Daddy. Through his 84 years of life, he has touched so many lives in a multitude of ways.
The saying goes that "everybody dies but not everybody truly lives" and my Grampy's journey has been a full and rich one. The proof of that incredible journey is the strong legacy he leaves behind – his wife of 29 years Cheryl, seven children: Kari, Keith, Gayle, Craig, Susan, Rich, and Cynthia, 9 grandchildren, 9 great-grandchildren and multiple nieces and nephews. This was his family and I know he was so incredibly proud and protective of each one of us in his own way.
Whether someone knew him professionally or personally, Al was the person you would come to for advice and most importantly, respect and love.
To sum up what he meant to me or our family in a few short paragraphs is impossible; we are not even used to him being fully gone yet.
An Army Veteran who served during the Korean War, my grandfather would go on to come home and adopt 4 children, two of them from Korea itself. Then, later in life, his family would grow to include Cheryl’s 3 children in his second marriage. His heart knew no boundaries and to him, family was family no matter where you came from – period.
Willing to help in the most myriad of ways, whether it was direct or a nudge in the right direction, he is, quite frankly the most equally impressive, smart and grounded man you could ever wish to have known.
He taught us all the importance of family, education and forging your own way to success. Known to be a "fixer", he could be found tinkering with new inventions, projects in his wood shop, running his successful business WoodTronics, helping his grandchildren attend college or learn job skills, passing along his life experiences to his family to help them grow as business people or as of late, running his farm and hosting various family and friends at the home he and Cheryl had built from the ground up. He did so love his donkeys!
His legacy lives on. Strong, solid and unbreakable. I think if there's one way you can ever really live forever, then it's through those you leave behind.
I know that while he may be gone and we are all the more sad for it, in the end, he told us that he was "ready to go" and we believed him. He lived life fiercely and we love him endlessly.
I'll miss you terribly Grampy and I hope I did you proud with this eulogy. I tried to include everyone that you loved or cared about and my hope is that we continue to march through life having been made better for your presence in it. There will never be another one of you and I'll always cherish the memories you've allowed me to make with you, even from states apart, so thank you for that from the bottom of my heart.
A Poem for Alfred Schainholz:
Not enough farewell words were spoken
We had so little time to say goodbye
You were gone before we knew it and only God knows why
My heart aches in sadness and secret tears, they flow
What it means to lose you, now we all sadly can know
A presence from our family has gone
A voice we loved is still
A place is vacant in our lives
That never can be filled
The blow was great and the shock severe
We never thought the end was near
And only those who have lost, can tell
The pain of that heartache without a strong farewell
Your memory is our keepsake
From which we will never part
The other side may have you in their keeping
But we still have you in our heart