Jochen Schmitz (1943-2017)
Jochen Schmitz was born on the 3rd of April 1943 in Mulheim-an-der-Ruhr, Germany, to Gunter and Anna Schmitz. His father later died in 1947 so Jochen was brought up by his mother with his elder sister Rosemary in the difficult aftermath of World War II. He was apprenticed to Demag, a large engineering manufacturer of steel mills, and graduated as a mechanical engineer. He immigrated to Canada in 1967 and was employed by Montreal Engineering Co. in Montreal. He continued his education at McGill University in Montreal where he studied gas turbine technology and later at Western University in London, Ontario, where he studied business administration.
During his studies at Western in 1969, he met his future wife Antoinette, herself an emigrant from Ireland. They met on the Montreal to London VIA rail Rapido train, and before the trip was over he had proposed to her. He was welcomed by her extended family, and their marriage was later blessed with the arrival of their two sons, Karl and Kristian. Jochen and Antoinette were happily married for 47 years.
After Western University he worked for a few years at Hatch Associates in Toronto before joining the business development group at TransCanada Pipelines. His work at TransCanada led to a raft of expansion projects culminating in the huge Iroquois Pipeline project feeding natural gas from Canada to New England and Long Island, N.Y.
He continued working on business development projects with TransCanada until 1990 when he started his own engineering consultancy, Northern Energy Ltd. He was then persuaded to take the position of Senior Vice President of Business Development at Union Energy and started by building the Lake Superior Power electrical generating plant in Sault Ste. Marie. After the company was sold, he returned to Northern Energy and continued to work on many interesting projects. Throughout his fascinating and successful career, Jochen earned the deep respect of all who worked with him as a brilliant engineer and formidable business negotiator.
After retirement, Jochen took up golfing and became a regular member of Deerfield Golf Club in Oakville, where he enjoyed many great days with his friends.