At the age of 83, on Saturday March 18, 2017, Ardon Orvil Schmidt went to be with his beloved Savior. He dedicated his whole life to serving the Lord and was ready to meet Him. He deeply loved God and wanted everyone to experience God's unconditional love. Ardon was always ready to discuss God and His word to help others understand God more fully. His love for the Lord was contagious - the joy of his salvation lived out in his smile, which he shared with everyone he met. Ardon's dedication and delight in the Lord drew people to him who were seeking to learn and experience the peace of God.
Born in Stockton, CA, on November 30, 1933 to Otto and Norma, Ardon was the oldest of three sons. He graduated from Livingston High School in 1951. By 1954 he felt the call to attended Glad Tidings Bible Institute in San Francisco. He ultimately graduated from Bethany Bible College in 1956. After graduating from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in 1958 he assumed his first pastorate in Madera, CA, and then subsequently ministered in Cotati and San Bruno. In 1965, while in San Bruno, Ardon responded to an opportunity to join the United States Army as a Chaplain, thus beginning his 28 years of serving his country and fellow soldiers.
During his first assignment in Fort Hauchuca, AZ, (1966) he was given orders to serve in Vietnam where he was wounded and received the Purple Heart. After serving a year in Vietnam he was stationed at Fort Polk, LA. Between 1969-1973, Ardon served in Wurzburg and Aschefenburg, Germany. While in Germany, he had the opportunity to deliver Bibles to a communist country which did not have access to the Word of God. After Germany he was a student at the Chaplain School at Fort Wadsworth Staten Island, NY, for one year from 1973-1974. He was then relocated to Fort Carson, Colorado from 1974-1977. After that, he moved to Chatsworth where he received specialized schooling for his counseling career from 1977-1978. He then returned to the Chaplain School at Fort Wadsworth, New York, where he served as staff member and trained younger chaplains from 1978-1980. The Chaplain School was moved to Fort Monmouth, NJ in 1980 where Ardon remained on staff until 1982. After teaching at the Chaplain School, Ardon was sent to Seoul, Korea to the Family Counseling Center working with the GI's and their families, where he served from 1982-1984. After his tour in Korea, Ardon served from 1984-1986 at Fort Ord and the Presidio, in Monterey, Ca. He finished out his military career serving at the Army Depot in Sacramento from 1988-1993, where he retired as a Lt Colonel.
During his career in the military he continued to pursue higher education earning Master Degrees in Psychology, Sociology, Education, Theology and Family Marriage and Counseling. Ardon strived to use his education to help others, whether through teaching, preaching or counseling soldiers and their families. After his retirement he accepted a position as a Pastoral Counselor at Sunset Christian Center in Rocklin, a position he held for six years. Still dedicated to higher learning Ardon then accepted a position as Professor of New Testament Studies at Trinity Life Bible College (now called Epic Bible College), where his passion for the word earned him a beloved place in the hearts of many of his students. He retired from this position in 2012.
During the final years of his life, Ardon delighted in his grandchildren, praying, encouraging, counseling, and caring for others. Even when he no longer held an official position of teaching and counseling, he still shared his wisdom and the love of Christ with everyone around him.
He is survived by his wife Susan, his sons Douglas (Lydia) and David (Kelly), his daughters Denise (Robert) and Debbie (Ramon), and their mother Delena, as well as two step daughters Stephanie (Tony), and Shannon. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Breeanna, Alyssa, Crystal, Christopher, Jeremey, Samantha, Cambria (Ryan), Stephanie, Robert-Sean, Nathan, Emily, Zachary, Sophie, Olivia, and Thomas. He is also survived by both of his brothers Jared and Dennis Schmidt, their families, and many cousins.
He was a humble man of great conviction who lived faithfully for the Lord he loved and has left an indelible mark on all who had the pleasure of knowing him. He will be GREATLY missed.
A memorial will be held on Saturday April 1, 2017 at Destiny Christian Church, 6900 Destiny Drive, Rocklin CA 95677.
The Trustees at Epic Bible College have established a Memorial Scholarship in Ardon Schmidt's name. Memorial gifts can be made to Epic Bible College, 4330 Auburn Blvd., Sacramento, CA 95841 or at www.EPIC.edu/give.