If you never met Sharon Rose (Schmokel) Wermedahl, you missed your chance to be entertained, counseled, educated, reprimanded, exasperated, charmed, cherished and loved unconditionally. Sharon Wermedahl, age 87, passed away Friday, November 20, 2020 at her home in Fargo under the excellent care of Home Instead Senior Services.
To those who knew and loved her well, she “was certainly a presence”, a “force”. She was known to drive a car from the passenger seat. The Schmokel family, long-accustomed to her lovable bossy dictatorship, referred to her as the General. However, underneath she was a tender-hearted pussycat who easily gave and got affection.
The prime target of her affection (and bossiness) was her husband Boyd. They came into each other’s lives in their late thirties, meeting at an art class. Sharon and Boyd Wermedahl were married on June 12, 1971 and set up residency on the historic South 8th Street in Fargo, ND. For forty-nine years of marriage, she brightened his world with stimulating conversation and an elegant, cultured life. Their house was a magnet for visitors, both young and old— retired contemporaries, gatherings of their gourmet bridge club, to young relatives attending North Dakota State University. Armed with an extensive cookbook collection and several sets of fine china, Sharon enticed a steady stream of people to her dinner table.
Sharon worked in the field of education, as a teacher at Prior Lake High School and Central High School in St Paul, and eventually on the staff at Moorhead State University as a counselor. Sharon taught physical education, which surprised many because in her own words—“I am as lazy as lazy can be.” Yes, a Phy Ed teacher who hated exercise.
Sharon was the first child of William E. Schmokel and Joanne (Nasiedlak) Schmokel. She was also the first grandchild in the family, enjoying a golden, pampered standing with her grandparents, even after the arrival two years later of the twins—brother William J. “Bill” Schmokel and sister Roberta J. “Bert” Ludowese.
Sharon attended elementary school in Prior Lake, graduated from Shakopee High School and received a BA and MA from Mankato State College. She was a founding member and first president of the Fargo Heritage Society as well as serving as the past president of the Fine Arts Club of Fargo. She was also a member of the Fargo/Moorhead Horticulture Society and the Restus Bronson Catholic Study Club. She was a 40 year long season ticket holder for the Winnipeg Ballet and enjoyed attending over 100 performances with Boyd throughout the years.
She is survived by her husband, Boyd; sister-in-laws, Eileen Schmokel of Prior Lake, MN and Gayle Hirst of Port Haywood, VA; godchild, Sandy “Oakley” Schmokel, nieces and nephews, Shelley (Allen) Schmokel-Joscher, Scott (June) Schmokel, Mike (Kris) Schmokel, Paul (Keri) Schmokel, Jeff Schmokel, Suzy (Brad) Lindow, Jim (Michelle) Ludowese, Lori (Vince) Paulus, Lisa Ludowese, Juliann Hirst, Charles (Christina) Hirst; cousins, Bob Schmokel, John (Jan) Baer, Betty (Bruce) Thomas; and numerous great-nieces and grand-nephews who she endeavored to influence, entertain and brainwash.
She was preceded in death by brother, William J. Schmokel, and sister, Roberta J. Ludowese.
Funeral Mass: 1 p.m. Tuesday, December 1 at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, West Fargo with visitation starting at 12 p.m. The service will be live streamed on Boulger Funeral Home’s website at www.boulgerfuneralhome.com. Imagine a mischievous Sharon, proclaiming: “But of course. I always knew I would be a television star one day.”
Donations in Sharon’s name can be made to the North Dakota State Historical Society Endowment Fund. (https://www.history.nd.gov/donatemoney.html).
Arrangements entrusted to the care of
Boulger Funeral Home & Celebration of Life Center, Fargo. Online guestbook at