Reynold “Swede” Hammerschmidt, age 89 of Redwood Falls, passed away Thursday, April 21 at Sunwood Good Samaritan Care Center. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Friday, April 29 at St. Catherine’s Catholic Church in Redwood Falls. Visitation is 4:00-7:00 p.m. Thursday, April 28 at the Redwood Valley Funeral Home and will continue one hour prior to services at the church on Friday. Burial with military honors will be in St. Catherine’s Catholic Cemetery. Online condolences may be sent at www.stephensfuneralservice.com. Stephens Funeral Service – Redwood Valley Funeral Home in Redwood Falls is assisting the family with arrangements.
Reynold “Swede” Hammerschmidt was born May 11, 1926 on a farm two miles north of Wanda, Minnesota to George and Maria (Simon) Hammerschmidt. He attended school in Wanda, St. Anne’s in Wabasso, and Wabasso public. Swede enlisted in the Army Infantry in 1944 at age 18 and served for two years fighting in France and Germany. He returned to the Wabasso area working for the Clements REA, Ochs Brick, and the Wanda Locker. Swede met and married Elaine Liebl September 19, 1948 and moved to Dawson in 1952. He farmed near Dawson until 1960 when he, his wife, and children moved to Redwood Falls. Swede was employed by E.G. Clinton and Mattson’s Steel Buildings until 1986 when he became a self-employed contractor until 2006. He entered Good Samaritan Care Center in 2012 and resided there until his death at the age of 89 years, 11 months, and 10 days. Swede enjoyed making music, dancing, working, camping at the lake, playing ball, fishing, and most of all, his family. He started playing clarinet, saxophone, harmonica, drums, and button accordion when he was 12. Swede played with Christy Hengel and other area musicians, later forming his own band The Harmony Knights. The band members included his wife, brother-in-law, and his children until 1973. In 1979 he and Elaine formed the band Jamboree and entertained in the area’s nursing homes. The last four years he played harmonica in his son’s band Hammertyme. Swede was a true musician till the end. He will be greatly missed by all who loved his sense of humor and his ability to repair anything. He built his children’s houses, shops, and garages, and many buildings in the area. Swede and Elaine guided their children with knowledge of music, running a band, loving life, and helping people. Their musical ability lives on in their children and grandchildren. Swede’s Catholic faith was at the top of the list and guided him through the war and his life’s ups and downs. He and his family were members of St. Catherine’s Catholic Church in Redwood Falls since 1960.
Swede is survived by his children: Steve, Ken, Dan (Karen), Scott (Esther), and Pam Sisco, all of Redwood Falls; grandchildren: Stacey (Chad Heiling), David, Chad (Kelly), Kelly, Clair, Michael (Alyssa), Mary, Cory (Angie) Stephens, Angie Sisco, Amanda Sisco, and Luke; sisters Leah Dolezal and Elaine (Norman) Rudenick; and 10 great grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his wife Elaine, parents, 11 siblings, son Mike, daughter-in-law Becky, son-in-law Bill Sisco, grandson Rick Stephens, and numerous brothers and sisters-in-law. Blessed be his memory.