Gerhard Hans  Schoellhammer
MILFORD - Gerhard Hans Schoellhammer, more commonly known in his silver years as "Opi," turned the final page in his epic journey on Oct. 4, 2019, surrounded by his family.
Opi was born in Germany in 1926 and lived many lives, which when weaved together tell a remarkable and unbelievable story of bravery, resilience and the power of destiny.
He was a German paratrooper in World War II, an escaped prisoner of war, an optometrist, an immigrant to America, and the founder of a successful optical shop which is still open for business today. But some of his most notable accomplishments were that of devoted husband to Edith for more than 65 years and father to Sabine Curry (Larry), Susan Leonard (John) and his previously deceased daughter, Sonia Prendergast (Rob Elliot). He also leaves behind his son, Lutz Duvinage, who resides in Germany.
Over the years, Gerhard became Opi to six grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, and many extended family and friends. He leaves us as a pillar of astounding dignity, love and discipline.
Gerhard's life will be celebrated and remembered at 3 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 10, at Milford Center Community Bible Church. Reception will follow.
To help grant Opi one last selfless act in his beautiful love story, please consider contributing to Mohican Flowers, 207 Main St., Cooperstown, NY 13326, so Opi can continue to provide joy to his darling Edith for the upcoming difficult months.
To send online condolences visit
Arrangements are entrusted to Ottman Funeral Home, Cherry Valley.
Published on October 7, 2019


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Harry & Elaine Breimann
Oct 12, 2019
Our condolences to Edith and the entire Schoellhammer family. You are in our prayers and thoughts. We are saddened to learn of the passing of such a wonderful and kind man. In business and life, he gave of himself to make sure others walked away with a smile. Gary had become family over the years, and our time spent together dancing, or having a wonderful dinner, always left us laughing. Along with such wonderful memories. We will never forget them. We have been blessed to have such a person as Gary come into our lives, and will miss him dearly. Thank you for your love and a life time of memories.
Jackie Leonard
Oct 10, 2019
My thoughts and prayers are with the entire Schoellhammer family. Opi was always such a happy person. He always had a great big smile on his face and a zest for life. He never met a stranger and loved everyone. Heaven has gained a special angel and he is rejoicing with Sonia. I will always remember his smile, kindness, and love for people.
Patricia Leonard
Oct 10, 2019
Beautiful in Blue was purchased for the family of Gerhard Hans Schoellhammer by Patricia Leonard.  Send flowers
Wayne and Joan Breimann
Oct 08, 2019
Our condolences to Edith and family. Gary was truly one of a kind. His laughter ,kindness,words of wisdom, and love of life was truly infectious to all of us. You will be dearly missed,but will be forever in our hearts,thoughts and prayers.Heaven has gained a one of a kind angel.Love to you and your family always.
Wayne Breimann
Oct 08, 2019
Margaret Eaton
Oct 08, 2019
Sweet Tranquility Basket was purchased for the family of Gerhard Hans Schoellhammer by Margaret Eaton.  Send flowers
Susan Niles
Oct 08, 2019
Edith and family,
I'm so sorry for your loss. Gary was one of the kindness men I knew. We had so many good times and laughs when playing cards and visiting. Lots of Love to the family.
Janette Snellbaker
Oct 08, 2019
Every family should have an "Opi". A person by whom we should set our moral compass. Rest easy the arms of your angel Sonia.