John "Jack" H. Schomer
January 9, 1938 – May 8, 2018
John “Jack” H. Schomer was born on January 9, 1938 in Chicago, IL to his late parents, German immigrant Herman Henry Schomer (1912-1996) and Peg Schomer (born Louis Margaret Eward, 1916-2008). Jack was the oldest of six boys and is survived by his five brothers and their families: James, William, Donald, Norman Scott, and Richard. Jack and his family moved to Jackson, MI from Chicago in 1954 and he graduated from Jackson High School in 1956, where he also played on the State Championship Basketball Team. Jack played in the minor leagues for the Chicago Cubs from 1957-1959 when an injury sustained to his right shoulder in a car accident ended his baseball career, but lead him to a successful legal career.
Jack graduated from Michigan State University with a BA in 1962. He married Gail Louise Groom in Leyland, Michigan in an intimate ceremony. He later graduated with a law degree from Wayne State University in 1965. Jack practiced law for over 52 years, ending his career with Marcoux, Allen, Schomer, Bower, Nichols, and Kendall where he specialized in Trial Practice and Corporate Law. Jack had previously practiced law for years with Dykema, Gossett. Jack was a strong and active community leader, active with little league baseball, he chaired and oversaw organizations like the Jackson Alliance, Foote Hospital, and was a former President of Jackson Country Club. He worked hard to bring new businesses into the community and he represented a wide base of companies and clients he felt connected and impassioned to help them legally as best he could. Both Jack and Gail valued a strong education and community.
Jack’s greatest achievement was his beloved family. He is survived by his loving wife Gail of 54 years, their five children and beloved spouses and little cubs: Jason and Becky Schomer of Rochester, Michigan, John and Lee Schomer of North Royalton, Ohio, Abby and Paul Thouin of Eldersburg, Maryland, Lincoln and Heather Schomer of Clarkston, Michigan, and Dina and Chris Collins of Glenview, Illinois. In addition, Jack has 23 grandchildren: Rachel, Samual, Benjamin, Abraham, Olivia, John Joseph “Jack” Schomer, Casey, Jason John, Johnny, Camille, Christopher, Brooke, Christian, Ella, Luke, Lincoln James, John Joseph “Jack” Collins, Beau, Joey, Charlie, Robert, Ricky, and Tyler; and five great-grandchildren: Lennix, Robert, Jr., Emily, Allison, and Matthew.
The family will greet friends from 5:00pm-7:00pm on Friday, May 11, 2018 at Pixley Funeral Home, 322 W. University Dr., Rochester, MI. Funeral services will be held at 10:00am on Saturday, May 12 at the above location. Visitation from 9:30am until time of service. In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests that memorial contributions be made to Residential Hospice. Fond memories and online condolences may be offered to the family at www.PixleyFuneralHome.com
A Song to Carry Us by Abigail Thouin
It was my Dad who first introduced me to my passion for music. I was at the ripe age of around eight with shoulder length blond pigtails when I remember him coming home from a hard day's work, as a lawyer. He was over 6 feet tall, strong and athletic with piercing blue eyes, like most daughter's I looked up to him; he always brought me to new heights. It was close to dinner time, when he went to our television room filled with the latest gadgets and gizmos and he pulled out of his store plastic bag and popped in the latest edition of technology: the illustrious 8 track tape.
We all gathered; my mom, three brothers and a baby sister, and listened to the magical moment and introduction to the great Roger Miller and his hilarious foot stomping song of My Uncle used to Love me but, she Died. The magic of the music that brought us all together. A large family of seven ranging from children ages 14 to 2 years of age.
My uncle used to love me but, she died... chicken ain't chicken 'til it's lickin' good fried! keep on the sunny side, my uncle used to love me but, she died.
I soaked it in, my sound bath of a bubbly bliss. I was floating and immersed in this delicious moment as if a piece of me returned home. My Dad had, in his infinite wisdom given me permission to feel in, to touch and to embrace the blossoming rhythm of my soul, the inward surge and swell of the tempo, the beat and how it moved me! My Dad's face was glowing proudly as he carried the gift of music home to us that night. He smiled, fingers and feet tapping, head a nodding as his blue eyes twinkled and sparkled with joy as he watched my dancing Mom as she married the music with movement. She was joy to watch with her fully animated facial expressions while twirling and spinning my toddler sister Dina in her arms. My brothers, sprawled on the floor poking one another in the ribs. It was magical. The memories engraved and grooved onto my heart like a 33 record.
The music lessons carried us forward in life. In the summers, we made the long country drives on most Saturdays mornings, after piano lessons and little league baseball games, out to our log cabin cottage on Crystal Lake in Southern Michigan. All seven of us were jammed into the 4 door wooden paneled station wagon with Duchess, our brown and white English Setter who loved to slobber like no other dog. Me? I was smushed, like a baseball caught between what seemed like the grip and glove of two clashing staccato notes of elbowing brothers and the waft of stink dog. Caught. The grueling twenty minute car ride felt like an eternity until my dad inserted the music of the moment as if we teleported to the soulful and new world of Elton John's Crocodile Rock and Honky Cat. They said, get back, honky cat, Better get back to the woods, Well, I quit those days and my redneck ways, And, oh, the change is gonna do me good. A smooth ride ensued except for the occasional smell of someone, other than the dog.
Walking on water, in my younger days, in a two-story colonial home, the basement became a sound chamber of refuge during the Michigan cold winter days. The long shag green and blue carpet, like a frozen lake laid just over the hard cement floor, didn't bother me except when I got my daily rug burn from dancing and d'jaying using the small record player. We had an extensive family library of vinyl 33s and 45s of past and present treasures. One of my favorites: Disco Duck: Moving my feet to the disco beat How in the world could I keep my seat, All of a sudden, I began to change I was on the dance floor acting strange Flapping my arms, I began to cluck, Look at me, I'm the disco duck!
Or, maybe the sting of rug burn was a result of the times when my two older brothers Jason and John, got volunteers: Lincoln, Dina and myself to play our novelty homemade game named, Trip’em: where we 3 smaller kids attempt to run across the shag carpet as the two older attempt to trip us with pillows! I became Queen at Another One Bites the Dust, And another one gone, and another one gone, Another one bites the dust, Hey, I'm gonna get you too, Another one bites the dust.
There was always a new tune to carry me through the day like Shawn Cassidy's a DoRun Run Run or, I Love a Rainy Night, Well I love a rainy night; I love a rainy night, I love to hear the thunder; of Dad's passion in the early 80's when I was in high school, he came home with all the latest turntable stereo equipment and control panels that looked like something from the Star Wars Movie. The speakers were several feet long and the family spent all day in harmony hooking up wires while humming all the while. The speakers rested on top of the ceiling high bookshelves. We were wired. We were ready.
Oh Holy Night! So Christmas that year, we all got 33 albums. I got ABBA- Dancing Queen, that was me! My dad called me ABBA dudes, and I just finally got his subtle humor as I am writing this! Dancing Queen, Does Your Mother Know, and my favorite: I Have a Dream, I have a dream, a song to sing, To help me cope with anything, If you see the wonder of a fairy tale, You can take the future even if you fail, I believe in angels, Something good in everything I see, I believe in angels When I know the time is right for me, I'll cross the stream, I have a dream........
Music and me were inseparable. The walkman came next! Portable with head phones and with a touch of a finger we fast forward to the rhythm of a new beat of the rock and roll of hormones and high school! The Bee Gees' Stayin Alive and Tragedy rocked my world. Rocky's Eye of the Tiger was the music to my gymnastic floor routine. It connected and somehow freed all my layers simultaneously as I pirouetted in my handstands and caught myself in aerial cartwheels to the rhythm of something much greater than myself as it literally raised me up and defied gravity! It still does to this day. How I love to choreograph movement to music, like my mom, the gift of music gave me my Wings: With a Little Luck: There Is No End To What We Can Do Together, There Is No End, There Is No End, The Willow Turns His Back On Inclement Weather, And If He Can Do It, We Can Do It, Just Me And You
Me and my beloved music. The rhythm and tempo of the Soul. Love Lifts us Up to Where we Belong, by Joe Cocker. Our wedding Song.
Who knows what tomorrow brings, In a world few hearts survive, All I know is the way I feel, When it's real, I keep it alive, The road is long, There are mountains in our way, But we climb a step every day, Love lift us up where we belong, Where the eagles cry, On a mountain high, Love lift us up where we belong, Far from the world below, Up where the clear winds blow..... Fast forward about 8 years ago, I did my advanced yoga teacher training thesis on the Nada Yoga, the Yoga of Sound. In my research paper I wrote: our ears are the first organ to develop in utero and that when we die, the sense of hearing is the last to go. The yogis believe that our sense of hearing is linked to the right side of our brain which is our spatial connection to God, Universe and Source. The fifth chakra, the throat, defines how well we listen and how well we communicate and speak our truth.
My dad taught me, that music never dies. It is the closest thing to the Soul that I have found on a sensory level. As I take my "I-tunes" with me to my visits to Mom and Dad and we listen. Together. It moves us into the moment where life dances and the Soul sings, no matter the genre or the medium.
Soul and song are immortal. The whistle of the wind teaches us that. The symphony and sound of the toilet flushing and the rude driver honking behind us while stopped in traffic. There is a certain resonance and beauty in our daily melodic and mundane hymns and haws of life. If we stop and listen. We have a front row seat. As the speakers of Soul and Moment attempt to reach and pull us into that shared and sacred space of Life.
There is always a song to carry us through the mountain highs and the canyon lows of our earthly trek. There is forever a song to marry us. And, there will be one or more to bury us.
Music is the universal language of love. The key to unlock the Spirit. As we spin and slow down to a new tempo, it is the Song of the Soul that carries us through the winds of transition.
We fall and feel into the silence and become the space between the notes. A sound bath for the soul, as our hearts, like a chorus, sing for more with the voices of yesterday engrained into each of us on the turn table of time. Our bodies, like vinyl, remind us that all records are meant to be broken but, the Song of the Soul grooves to the immortal tune of infinite measures. That is the Gospel truth. Can I get a Hallelujah?!
Thank you, Mom and Dad for the joy of music and for sharing your songs of life and of love. As I write my own in homage, to compose, dance, and choreograph my life as I sing and play with your same passion and joy.
The cadence of life and of breath: It is a song that carries us through to a place where both sound and silence are one, where a piece of me becomes a peace of you and, together we spread the message of the universal vibrations of Love through the air waves of the Soul!
Find the Music of the Moment. Listen. Love Always,
Dancing Abba Dudes
A Tribute to Jack Schomer : My Dad May 11, 2018
By Jason R Schomer
Acknowledgements: Those who came from out of town/Jackson. Sunrise Nick/Lisa/others….Residential hospice…..my siblings….john/lee ‘Abby/Paul Linc/heather D/Chris.
Tall, strong, handsome, athletic, intelligent, fierce, competitive, respected, unwavering, a soldier, counselor, nickname, world class tickler, husband-advocate, father, and the last 10 years…..a friend.
I don’t know if any of you have seen the movie “Second hand lions” but in that movie is a scene where young Walter, the young man, is in a bar with his uncles, and Hub, played by Robert Duvall, makes a very strong impression on him and he deals with some young bullies. Watch in on you tube if you get a chance…. I had that experience……
1974, Jackson Withington stadium, along with 2000 other fans sitting second row from the top with some friends of dad from Foote Hospital. Around halftime I noticed the 5-year-old boy sitting next to me was buckled over crying while his young dad comforted him. Dad, leaned over and asked the father, “ did that man just behind you kick your son in the stomach”, the father nodded yes. The next thing I knew was that the 18-year-old bully sitting behind us was dragged by his feet then hair to the hard metal seat next to me and tasting that metal seat. While dad calmly said to him, “ you are three times the age of that young boy and kicking him in the stomach is not acceptable”. The police arrived, and the bully was escorted out of the stadium, we were allowed to stay. The story isn’t over….after the game we exited the field and had to make that long , dark walk behind the stadium to our car about ½ mile away…..and of course we were being followed by, Mr. Bully, and 12 of his goon buddies. I said, Dad, I’m fast, we can make it to the car if we run NOW……OH NO…….about face……follow me Jase……he marched “ quickly” and head on right to them and preceded to focus only on Mr. Bully, and with courtroom demeanor he immediately convicted the bully and ALL his friends that what he’d done was not acceptable…..the goons quickly dispersed, and the reached out and shook his hand …….obviously he’d not had a father like Jack Schomer but now he’d seen what a real man of courage was like…..and so had I.
Dad could absolutely throw a baseball like no body I’d ever seen, not thru high school or even during my college baseball days….the man could wing it……AND I PLAYED A LOT OF CATCH WITH DAD……playing catch has its way of exposing what’s really going on inside of you at that time…..worry/excitement/anger/sadness/……..and exposing it….dealing with it…..and then adjusting yourself to get back on target. If you get a chance to see the last scene of “ Field of Dreams” where Ray finally gets to play a game of catch with his dad John….its a real tear jerker and although my life was different in that Dad played catch with me almost every day as a young man……that experience is something I’ll remember as much as anything about my childhood……and I look forward to having a game of catch with him again.
The last thing I want to say is that dad was without a doubt the most amazing advocate for mom that there has ever been. We met several times a week for months in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti…me often staying for an hour or two……he’d be there for 8 hours every day. He sacrificed everything to make sure he was there whether heavy rain, snow, morning, evening, he was there……. head bowed……often sleeping…. ready to talk with the doctors or nurses or the person cleaning her room. Steady on……. always knowing she would wake up and remember who she was and who her family was….and be able to come home again. He NEVER wavered from that hope and assurance. He told me on one visit that he’d spent many hours asking God to allow mom to return home and to have her life back……and He got the answer to his prayers. In the past few years, the gift he gave us was a sweet tenderness, often accompanied with tears that let us know that even though he couldn’t talk or say what he wanted ……. we KNEW he loved us…….we KNOW…..
Dad….we honor you and love you.
- Gail Louise (nee Groom) Schomer, Wife
- Jason (Becky) Schomer, Son
- John (Lee) Schomer, Son
- Abby (Paul) Thouin, Daughter
- Lincoln (Heather) Schomer, Son
- Dina (Chris) Collins, Daughter
- Rachel, Samual, Benjamin, Abraham, Olivia, John Joseph “Jack” Schomer, Casey, Jason John, Johnny, Camille, Christopher, Brooke, Grandchildren
- Christian, Ella, Luke, Lincoln James, John Joseph “Jack” Collins, Beau, Joey, Charlie, Robert, Ricky and Tyler, Grandchildren
- Lennix, Robert, Jr., Emily, Allison, and Matthe, Great Grandchildren
- Herman Henry Schomer, Father
- Peg (born Louis Margaret Eward) Schomer, Mother
- James Schomer, Brother
- William Schomer, Brother
- Donald Schomer, Brother
- Norman Scott Schomer, Brother
- Richard Schomer, Brother
- Residential Hospice Foundation
- Visitation Friday, May 11, 2018
- Visitation Saturday, May 12, 2018
- Funeral Service Saturday, May 12, 2018
John "Jack" H. Schomer
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May 10, 2018
I want to offer my condolences to Gail and family. I met Jack shortly after I was transferred back to Jackson around 1980 . We became good friends and played handball for about 30yrs. Jack was an honest and humble person who would do anything to help you. I missed him and lost contact when he and Gail moved to the Rochester area, but never forgot him. Jack was a good guy that I will miss.