Plainwell Community Schools is proud to announce that Lt. Col. David L. Schmitt, ‘78, has been given the honor of the 2015 Outstanding Alumni Award for his tireless efforts in serving this country in the United States Air Force with great pride and dedication. David has served in the Middle East, including Afghanistan twice in the last three years. David epitomizes the word “outstanding” and clearly deserves this recognition.
A 1978 graduate of Plainwell High School, David’s determination and ability was evident even at an early age. During his years at PHS, through hard work and a desire to achieve, he excelled both academically and in extracurricular activities. David was first chair trumpet in the band and quarterback of the football team. He also graduated in the Top 10 of his class.
David graduated from Michigan State University in 1983 with a Bachelors of Science in Mechanical Engineering and received a Masters degree in Manufacturing Management at Kettering University in 2004. He also received recognition as a Distinguished Graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) in East Lansing, Michigan. He attended the prestigious Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training Program at Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas. He earned Distinguished Graduate and Top Gun Honors during Lead-In Fighter Training at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico. While serving as an F-15 pilot, he flew over 40 missions in support of Desert Storm. Some years later as a KC135 pilot, he flew sorties in support for Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. David is currently a member of the 434th Air Refueling Wing at Grissom Air Reserve Base in Indiana. He has worked as the Chief of Nuclear Plans where he was responsible for the development of worldwide strategic, nuclear, conventional, and special operations missions. Today, he is currently serving as the Commander of the 434th Operational Support Squadron at Grissom Air Reserve Base.
David has been married to another 1978 Plainwell High School graduate, Sheri Harvey Schmitt, for 34 years. They have a son, Joshua, who will study business at Purdue University next year.
David was honored at Plainwell High School’s 143rd Commencement Ceremony, on Thursday, May 21, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. in the evening.