Donn Roderick Schoenmann of Mill Valley and Idyllwild passed away the morning of Thursday, March 22, at Marin General Hospital. Born Aug 2, 1937, in Glendale, he lived his life in both Southern and Northern California but kept strong ties to Iowa where his parents and generations before had settled.
Donn spent most of his professional career at Merrill Lynch in Los Angeles and San Francisco where he worked for 30 years until his battle with cancer forced his retirement. Faced with a daunting prognosis, with doctors predicting a remaining lifespan of six months, he survived another 25 years with his typical strong-willed determination.
During those years, he devoted his life to family and public service, serving in many philanthropic capacities — a trustee of the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles, the California Historical Society, the San Francisco Historical Society and the California Missions. He also spent many years actively supporting the Idyllwild Arts Academy as a trustee and governor of the Idyllwild Arts Foundation.
In the end he lost his battle with cancer, but only after many productive years that many said he wouldn’t see.
He is survived by his wife Lynn; children Stuart (Charlotte), Celeste (Mark), Beth, Anna and Jason; brother Nick (Monica); and grandchildren Colette, Valerie, Evan, Genevieve and Gabriel; and was predeceased by daughter Valerie and granddaughter Christina.
Memorial services will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 7, at the Church of our Saviour in Mill Valley, and at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 12, at St. Hugh of Lincoln Episcopal Church in Idyllwild.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to any of the worthy causes Donn supported in his lifetime, including the Idyllwild Arts Foundation or the American Cancer Society.