The beginning

Dot n Ray

Raymond E. Schmidt

My passion for military history research began with my Grandmother’s brother Raymond E. Schmidt who was killed in action outside of Heddert, Germany on 14 March 1945.  I grew up hearing about Ray, but it wasn’t until I was an adult that I opened my heart to learning about his service and sacrifice. 

One summer when I visited my Grandma, she had all of Ray’s war time letters laid out on her couch.  When I began to read a specific letter written in January, 1945, my whole world changed.  Raymond sent my Grandma a “sealed envelope” with documents detailing a child that he fathered in England in 1944.  Nobody in my family knew the identity of the child, digging into something like that just didn’t happen back then from what I was told.  But my Grandma had a longing in her eyes that spoke to me so I asked her if I could try and find the child, her response was a nod.  That nod was the beginning of my journey.