Alfred Schmakeit passed away quietly on May 15, 2020 at the Josephine Sunset Home in Stanwood. He was 94. Born on January 14, 1926 in Dachsfelde, East Prussia to Emil and Emma Schmakeit. Alfred was one of eight children raised on the family farm east of Koenigsberg.
He survived the ravages of World War II and the brutal postwar Communist annexation of Eastern Europe. In 1957 he and his wife Norma, along with their children, lawfully immigrated to the United States. The family's immigration was made possible through the sponsorship of the Lutheran World Welfare League, the original Our Savior's Lutheran Church of Stanwood and, Palmer and Trudy Sather; who provided a home for the family and employment for Alfred. The lengthy immigration process included thorough medical screenings and rigorous vetting by the US State Department. The family departed West Germany on board the WWII US Army troop ship, the MS General W.C. Langfitt, sailing from Bremerhaven to New York City in March 1957. The stormy Atlantic winter voyage took ten days. From New York City the family traveled by train to Everett, Washington, where they were met by new friends and a new life in America. They received their US citizenship in 1962 after studying American history and civics at Skagit Valley College. The mandatory citizenship classes were followed by the successful completion of a final written exam and then a naturalization ceremony before a judge in Everett.
Alfred worked for several years on Palmer Sather's farm before starting the family dairy farm in Cedarhome. The family business shipped for Darigold for nearly twenty years. Alfred then worked for the Stanwood School District until his retirement.
Alfred lived a hardworking, independent and happy life in America. He and his wife will be remembered for their hospitality and eternal optimism. He leaves behind three adult children, five grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. At his request, no services will be held. A private family memorial gathering will be held at a later date. Remembrances in his name may be made to the ALS Association, the Wounded Warrior Project, or a charity of your choice.