Jim (79) and Sue Schultz (78) were called home to be with the Lord and were welcomed into His open arms on the afternoon of May 24, 2022. They were reunited with Jim’s parents, Carl & Emily Marak Schultz, and Sue’s parents Edward & Ewana Kopatich Szopinksi.
Jim was born in Halstead, Kansas on December 6, 1942 and is survived by his two sisters, Pat Kinlaw of Elizabethtown, NC and Carolyn Kile of Springfield, Missouri. Sue Schultz was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on March 10, 1944 and is survived by her aunt, Rosie Gaska of Madison, Wisconsin and her cousin Jeanne Bartol of New Berlin, Wisconsin.
Jim and Sue often reminisced of their meeting in Waukegan, located along the shores of Lake Michigan – Jim in his white sailor’s uniform and Sue giggling with her friend – and both agreed that it was love at first sight. The couple wed on May 22, 1965 and moved to San Diego where Jim was stationed. They quickly began growing their family with the birth of their eldest son, Jimmy, on February 18, 1966 and their second son, Joey, on August 16, 1967. Desiring to be near their family, Jim and Sue packed their bags and two children into their station wagon and moved to Elizabethtown, NC to be close to Jim’s sister, Pat. They completed their family with the birth of their youngest son, John, on April 28, 1970. Jim and Sue were known for their contagious laughter, quick wit, and unwavering love for each other that was like no other – but one thing is for sure: they are truly now inseparable.
Known for their involvement in the community, Jim and Sue devoted their lives to giving back to Elizabethtown by sharing their lending hands, listening ears and, of course, their contagious laughter. Members of the St. Francis De Sales Church in Lumberton, NC, their faith was also evident in their walks of life. Jim enjoyed learning, tinkering and working with technology, spending many years working with Veeder-Root/Danaher Controls. Jim was also an avid member of the local Optimist Club, a beloved baseball coach in Bladen County and enjoyed many conversations with friends at NAPA. You also may find Jim outside working in his garden or relaxing in his big blue recliner watching NASCAR. Sue, with her bubbly personality, loved spending time with others and connecting with new people. She introduced herself as “Grandma” to all of her grandchildren’s friends and wrapped anyone and everyone in tight, love filled hugs every chance she could. Driven by her love of people, Sue provided in-home childcare for many residents of Elizabethtown and always shared a smile with her customers while working at the local bank. Family was of the utmost importance to Jim and Sue, and anyone who entered the doors of their home was treated as such.
The Schultz’s proudest accomplishments were without a doubt their children and grandchildren. They lovingly adored their sons and their wives Jimmy (Kim), Joey (Beth) and John (Melanie) as well as their grandchildren Joshua, Peyton, Kathryn, Logan, Tanner, Michael and Kingsley and their great grandchildren Kason and Emmie. Whether it was a sports game, dance recital, cooking lesson, an impromptu phone call, building gingerbread houses, a spontaneous road trip, playing hide-and-go-seek, or searching for attire for a special event, Jim and Sue never missed a beat in their lives. In a world full of the unprecedented, they were always the constant.
Jim and Sue were always present at their children’s and grandchildren’s sporting, school and community events. The two could still be found cheering for the local sports teams and attending school related booster events. Their support and love for athletics was unmatched as they were truly considered everyone’s biggest fan. They lived every day of their lives with intent and purpose and the legacy that they leave behind will be ever-present. Their adventurous personalities, never-ending appreciation of life, and unconditional love will live on through their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren forever.
The family will receive friends for a visitation on Thursday, June 2nd from 6:00-9:00 at Bladen Gaskins Funeral Home in Elizabethtown, NC. The funeral service will follow on Friday, June 3rd at 11:00 at St. Francis De Sales Church in Lumberton, NC.