Published On: Tue, Nov 13th, 2018

NIPA student Natasha Schmidt to be laid to rest today Wednesday

Flags half mast at NIPA school for Natasha Schmidt

PHILIPSBURG — The late Natasha Schmidt who was brutally murdered by her brother-in-law in the Dutch Quarter district on October 29, 2018, will be laid to rest today Wednesday in the Cul-de-sac cemetery. The 36 year-old mother of seven children was apparently shot several times in Dutch Quarter and was found lying on the ground by the police patrol who rushed to the scene of the incident.

She was transported to the St. Maarten Medical Center in a critical condition but later succumbed to her injuries and died.

The suspect in the shooting turned himself in at the Philipsburg Police Station with the firearm that he used to shoot Schmidt and was immediately arrested.

There are still conflicting reports regarding the incident since it is apparently being said the suspect who was the brother-in-law of Schmidt shot her because of a drug deal went wrong. The suspect is accused of manslaughter. The date of his trial case is yet to be determined. The Public Prosecutor’s Office informed StMaartenNews.com that the suspect in the Natashia Schmidt murder will remain in pretrial detention until the court hearing.

In a recent statement issued by the Minister of Education, the honorable Wycliffe Smith was quoted as saying that just a few weeks ago he had visited the National Institute for Professional Advancement (NIPA) and toured the facilities, including the MIC-IT program. There the minister met several trainees who had enrolled in the different construction courses being offered. “I congratulated them for taking the opportunity to continue their education as a way of improving their lives and the lives of their families.” the Minister of Education, Culture, Youth & Sports, Wycliffe Smith stated.

Remembering Natasha Schmidt“One of those MIC trainees was Natasha Schmidt, a 36-year-old mother of seven who had started on a path to improving her education, skills, and training. From accounts received, Natasha had determined to turn her life around, despite all the challenges that she faced.” the minister explained.

“She latched on to this hope through education at one of our local institutions. It is with great sadness that as a community, we were awakened to the news that violence had snatched a young life away.” the minister stated.

The minister furthermore reflected on the fact that “We are called ‘The Friendly Island’, and not too long ago, we were still living with that culture. Today, violence and crime have invaded our communities, our homes and our minds, gripping our residents with fear and isolation. Our children, youth, adults and seniors are affected. It is time to put a stop to this digression.”

“To reclaim and preserve our ‘friendly’ identity, as Sint Maarteners, we must combat violence with peace. When faced with conflict, encourage our children, our neighbours and ourselves to walk away.”

“We must defeat aggression with compassion. Consider yourself in the other person’s position and apply the Golden Rule. Let us do to others as we would have them do to us. We must counter negativity with a positive energy. Use the challenges that come our way to propel us to be better, stronger, greater!”

“On behalf of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, I extend condolences to the family and friends of Natasha Schmidt, and also to her school family at NIPA/MIC.”

“May her soul rest in peace. Remember, it takes a village to raise a child, so let us as a community give support to her children as they will need this care more than ever before.”

“May more of our people pursue the path to self-improvement and community upliftment through continued education. Weeping may endure for the night, but joy will come in the morning. Let us work together and overcome together.” Minister Wycliffe Smith concluded his press release.

According to a source close to the family, Natasha Schmidt was also a former student at the Sundial School. Facebook has memorialized the account of Natasha Schmidt with the theme “Remembering Natasha Schmidt” and with the statement “We hope people who love Natashia will find comfort in visiting her profile to remember and celebrate her life.”

On the same account a notice has been posted that “the wake for Natashia Schmidt will be held on Tuesday 13 Nov 2018 at the dq community center form 7pm-10pm.” According to the post, the funeral will be on the Wednesday, the 14th of November 2018 at the Catholic Church in Front Street and that the viewing will be from 1pm to 2pm as the service starts at 2pm.

The publisher and staff of StMaartenNews.com wishes the family and friends of Natasha Schmidt, and especially her children, much strength and courage in this time of bereavement. May her soul rest in eternal peace.

A Gofundme account has been set up to raise funds to help cover the family and funeral expenses and to help the children transitioned to a new home. The goal is raise $10,000 US Dollars. At the time of this writing, $1,240 US Dollars had already been raised. Click here to make a donation as well.