’52 Edwin W. Smelker MD (1924-2013)
Age 88 of St Paul, Minnesota passed away March 7, 2013. Ed grew up in Columbus, Ohio and played French horn in the Columbus Symphony. He served with the Army in World War II. After the war he earned an MD at Ohio State University. There he met and married his wife, Jean. In 1955 they moved to Topeka, Kansas where Ed specialized in psychiatry at the Menninger Clinic then the VA hospital. In 1970 the family moved to Minneapolis where Ed worked at the Minneapolis VA. You might have known Ed as Dr. Smelker, a psychiatrist at the VA Medical Center in Minneapolis. He used his incredible skills as a listener to help returning Vietnam Vets and started an outpatient PTSD program before most people even understood what PTSD was. You might have known him as Ed Smelker, who played French horn and cello in the Topeka Symphony . Or as a member of the Kenwood, JCC or the Linwood Orchestras in Mpls. If you knew him as a musician, you also probably knew him as a maker of many kinds of fudge, a generous host of musical events in his home, a co-camper at music retreats in Interlochen, Bozeman and Whitefish. Our family knew him best as husband, father, grandfather and father-in-law. We cherish his wry sense of humor, his loving care of the many pets who shared his life and his dedication to keeping himself physically, mentally and spiritually fit. We hope that the best of his characteristics remain in each of us. Survived by his wife of 62 years Jean, daughter Heidi, son Karl, grandchildren Isaac, Eliza, and Nathan, kids-in-law Debby, Marit and Johannes, and great grandson Brooks. A memorial to celebrate his life is being held at Episcopal Church Home, (1840 University Avenue, Saint Paul, MN 55104) in the Coventry Chapel, Saturday, April 13, 2013 at 2:00. Memorials to the education fund at Episcopal Church Homes.