Life Story Service
Thursday, December 15, 2022
5:00 PM to 7:30 PM EST
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Where food and stories will be shared.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Selfless, loving, and fun, Kevin Schamehorn lived a life rich in family and friends. Kevin possessed a great sense of humor and a genuine love for people. He never met a stranger as everyone quickly became his friend and it was said that he could talk an ear off a wooden Indian. A simple joke that was sure to incite his own infectious laughter, Kevin made an art of connecting with others. He loved talking with people, sharing his stories, and listening to theirs. Kevin always put others before himself and had a way of putting people at ease. It's no wonder he made so many lifelong friends. A devoted husband, father, son, brother, and friend, Kevin will long be remembered and so very missed.
Kevin was born on July 28, 1956 in Calgary, Canada, the youngest child of Skip and Jacqueline Schamehorn and he grew up in an active home in the good company of his older siblings, Laurie and Drew. As Skip was a physical education instructor in the Canadian army, the family moved around quite a bit, and the family even spent some time in Germany. It was important for the kids to be physically fit and participate in sports and like most Canadian boys Kevin and his brother Drew played hockey. Much family time was committed to travel and hours at the ice rink. Though it was time consuming, many fond memories were made with their travels.
At seventeen years old, Kevin left home to play Junior Hockey in Bellingham, Washington. When his outstanding play caught the eye of professional scouts, he was drafted by the Detroit Red Wings. This was the first step in fulfilling his boyhood dream to play in the NHL which he fulfilled with the Detroit Red Wings and the Los Angeles Kings. Over the span of three different decades, the seventies, eighties, and nineties, Kevin played professional hockey for several teams, including several seasons for the Kalamazoo Wings where he holds the record in for the most career goals, and his #26 proudly hangs from the rafters at Wings Stadium. Kevin always considered himself fortunate to live out his dream and so much of what he learned in the game of hockey carried over in his personal life.
When a friend begged him to attend a 30th birthday party for a girl he didn't know, Kevin's life dramatically changed. Upon first laying eyes on Natalia Santori, he was instantly smitten and followed Natalia around all night long. She finally had to ask him, "who are you?" Kevin's sense of humor won her over, and they were soon dating. Just a few months later, he proposed, and on March 27, 1993, they married at St. Mary Catholic Church in Kalamazoo.
In time, Kevin and Natalia were blessed to welcome three children to their family. A proud and delighted father, Kevin's daughters, Taylor, Hunter, and Tara were the center of his world. He was a fun, goofy dad who would do anything to inspire a laugh. While his goofiness could prove embarrassing for the girls, Kevin's steadfast support afforded comfort and security. Despite working long hours at Graphic Packaging, he never missed one of their volleyball, basketball, or soccer games. Life after hockey revolved around Natalia and the girls and focusing on providing for and protecting his family.
One of the greatest gifts Kevin gave his daughters was the love and friendship he shared with their mother. He and Natalia were a fun-loving couple who enjoyed singing and dancing in the living room and friendly competition. They competed in everything from ping pong and pool to wheel of fortune. Their 30 years of marriage were full of fun and laughter, mutuality and respect, and unwavering commitment. In their beautiful examples, their daughters witnessed how a good man treats a good woman and how a good woman treats a good man.
For those who knew him best, a few things quickly became certain about when Kevin was in the room. First and foremost was that there would be laughter. Kevin loved to laugh, and his infectious laugh inspired others' delighted laughter. No food was safe with Kevin around. He would eat anything, and to add flavor, he would add ketchup. Kevin lived his beliefs that life is too short to work away and it is important to pay your way.
Sadly, Kevin was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2018. Never one to shrink from a challenge, he faced the disease with hope and fought with all his might. Regardless of how difficult things became, he never lost his passion for life or his sense of humor, laughing through chemotherapy and assuring his family that he was not afraid to die. To the very end, he remained loving, thoughtful, and protective of the girls in his life.
A powerful example of how to live a wholehearted life, Kevin inspired all who were blessed to know him. Whether a person spent a moment or a lifetime with him, they were forever better for knowing him. Everything was better when shared with Kevin. With his warm smile, compassionate heart, and hearty laugh, he lessened life's hardships and amplified its joys. Though our days with him were far too few, the gift of his companionship will long live in our hearts and lives.
Kevin Schamehorn was baptized on November 27, 2022 at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church. Natalia’s parents, Reno and Betty Santori were his Godparents for this special occasion. Just a short 11 days later, on Thursday, December 8th Kevin died peacefully at his home.
Members of his family include his wife Natalia; his three daughters: Taylor, Hunter, and Tara; his sister, Laurie (Al) Terry; his brother, Drew (Sharon) Schamehorn, his father and mother-in-law, Reno and Betty Santori; and several nieces, nephews, and friends. Cremation has taken place. Please join us for a Life Story Service at 4 PM on Thursday, December 15, 2022, at the Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. A reception where food and stories will be shared will follow in the Life Story Center. Visit Kevin's webpage at BetzlerLifeStory.com to archive favorite memories and photos and sign his guestbook. Memorial contributions may be made to Centrica Care Navigators.