JOHN RICHARD SCHMIDLIN

Posted April 15, 2009, at 7:42 p.m.

-MACHIAS – John R. Schmidlin, 85, passed away Tuesday, April 13, 2009, at a Jonesport nursing home. He was the son of Carl Edward and Dorothy Jones Schmidlin. John attended Alden High School, Alden, N.Y. He graduated from the University of Maine in 1949, and went on to complete a Master of Arts degree at the University of Michigan in 1950, and later received a Certificate of Advanced Studies back at Orono in 1970. While at the University of Maine, John played football and basketball, and was a member of Alpha Tau Omega, Phi Epsilon Kappa, Pall Blue Key and Senior Skulls. During World War II, he saw service in Europe and South America while with the 1st Allied Airborne Army as a sergeant from 1943 to 1945. During 17 years at Gardiner High School, Gardiner, he coached football, basketball and baseball, and was director of athletics and head of physical education. His football teams won two state championships and several years of high rankings including four Kennebec Valley Conference championships. In 1967 he moved to the University of Maine – Machias as assistant professor of physical education, director of athletics and physical education, head coach of basketball and cross-country. He was responsible for the design and planning of the Reynolds Physical Education Athletic Complex at the University of Maine – Machias. During his tenure, the athletic program was expanded to include soccer, women’s volleyball, women’s basketball, baseball, men’s basketball, golf and cross-country. John held memberships in the Maine Association of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, the National College Physical Education Association, Maine College Basketball Coaches and Writers Association and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletic Directors. He was particularly prominent in the High School Coaches Association as a charter member and past president of the board of directors, where he served as executive secretary -treasurer for 26 years. He was also a charter member of the Sports Hall of Fame of the University of Maine. In 1982, John was honored by the East-West Seniors All-Star Basketball Committee for service to the sport of basketball. Also in 1982, the Kennebec Athletic Conference honored him for continued support of high school athletics and faithful service to the conference. The Maine Interscholastic Directors Association honored him for outstanding and dedicated contributions to Maine Interscholastic Athletics as a teacher, coach and athletic director. Also in 1982, John was honored by the Maine High School Coaches Association for his many years of dedicated service. He received thanks for being the thread and driving force that helped hold the association together for many years. In 1995, the state of Maine Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame presented John with the Contribution to Amateur Football Award, which is given to a Maine resident whose life epitomizes dedication to amateur football. John is survived by his wife, who he married in 1949, Betty R. Schmidlin of Machias; sister, Mrs. Dorothy C. Easton of Falmouth; several nieces and nephews. Anyone wishing to honor John in a monetary way may send a contribution to John R. Schmidlin Football Scholarship Fund at the University of Maine Foundation, 2 Alumni Place, Orono, ME 04469-5792. Arrangements by Direct Cremation of Maine, Belfast. Interment will be in the Schmidlin family lot at Norway-Paris Cemetery, Norway, at a future date.

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