Irmgard "Else" Schichtel

Walter and Irmgard Schichtel Fund
Sigrid and Guy Gibson

Walter and Irmgard “Else” Schichtel


Dark History Supports Bright Futures

For Irmgard (“Else”) Schichtel a childhood in Nazi Germany set in motion a circuitous path towards a permanent fund at Placer Community Foundation that will assist disadvantaged youth.

Known by her neighbors to be private, unassuming and at times tenacious in her views, Else lived a quiet life in Lincoln after her husband Walter’s passing in 2003. She had no children and relied on the assistance of neighbors for transportation and various needs. It was through these people she spoke of her very difficult years as a young girl.

Else quietly dissented and chose not to join the Nazi Youth Group. For this she was taken and placed in a labor camp where she resisted compliance; yelling out at a Nazi guard. She was promptly struck in the head by the butt of the guard’s rifle. This resulted in hearing loss for the remainder of life. Else always felt it was one of her siblings that had turned her in and led to her time in the camp—a betrayal that added to an already hard childhood of abuse from both her parents.

Else chose not share more of these years and with no family left behind we are left to construct how such a childhood shaped her life and her philanthropy.

Else moved to the United States as a young woman. It was later she met and married Walter Schichtel, a World War II Veteran. She and Walter lived in Northern California; settling down in Rocklin and later Lincoln where she spent the last years of her life. Those who knew Else say she knew the history of America better than anyone and was eager to educate people. She cared deeply for our country throughout her adult life.

Else established a trust and as she fell ill. She worked with her attorney Guy Gibson of Gibson & Tuttle Law to leave a gift to charity.

“Else wanted her gift to support disadvantaged youth but was unaware of the nonprofits best equipped to take on this work,” states Guy. It made sense to have the estate liquidated and prudently managed by Placer Community Foundation so they can direct the funds thoughtfully.”

Else left the bulk of her estate, including her home, to Placer Community Foundation to establish the endowed Walter and Irmgard Schichtel Fund. This fund will be managed by the Foundation in perpetuity with grants made annually to nonprofits providing high-impact programs that are flexible to the changing needs of underserved youth.

Placer Community Foundation is honored to carry out Else’s wishes and will forever share her story in connection to grants made in her and Walter’s memory.


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P.O. Box 9207
Auburn, California 65604

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