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April 21 1948 - May 16, 2022

Detlef Schuldt has died peacefully aged 74. He was the son of Luise Weinberg (nee Schuldt) and Kurt Jacob. Detlef was born in Rendsburg, Germany, and celebrated his eighth birthday mid-Atlantic when the family immigrated to Canada. They were processed in Galt before eventually settling in Kitchener, Ontario.

He started work in his stepfather’s construction company. But Detlef had other ambitions: rather follow in his father’s footsteps he chose to go into electronic engineering. When an opportunity arose to work for the Burroughs Corporation he jumped at it and never looked back.

Burroughs entered the office automation marketplace decades ahead of the competition and Detlef seized on the chance to work on their new systems. Following Burroughs’ merger with Sperry to form Unisys Corporation, he was fast-tracked into the unit set to deliver IT services and from there to Unisys’ single largest business, Services and Solutions.

His next career move was to join Purolator Canada as a Regional Manager. He retired in 2012 and was diagnosed with terminal cancer the following year.

Quiet and unassuming by nature, Detlef loved good company, good food and dancing. As one friend said on learning of his passing: “He never spoke, but when he did it was to say something meaningful.” He had a quick wit, impeccable timing, and a ready smile.

Detlef lived life to the full and was passionate about travelling. He was always eager for new experiences. Though he claimed he couldn’t swim, while on vacation in Mexico, he would paraglide and dive in the ocean before a lunch of Mexican grasshopper tacos. He once bravely navigated Italy’s narrowest side streets in a mid-sized car, and in 2011, narrowly avoided being trampled by elephants while on safari in South Africa.

Detlef Schuldt is survived by his mother, to whom he was devoted, his loving wife Susan Douglas, and two daughters from a previous marriage.

He had a brilliant sense of humour, was kind, and gentle.

Following Detlef’s wishes, cremation has taken place. Sincere thanks are due to the medical professionals and staff of the Cancer Centre of Grand River Hospital, Kitchener, the Guelph General Hospital, the exceptionally caring and dedicated staff of the Norfolk Manor, Guelph, and the amazing team at Hospice Wellington where he spent his final days.

 

A tree will be planted in memory of Detlef Schuldt in the Wall-Custance Memorial Forest.