Hans-Joachim Schacht, beloved husband, father and grandfather, passed away on October 7, 2017 after having survived four battles with cancer. He was born in Germany on February 14, 1927 – St. Valentine’s Day – appropriately so, for he was a most romantic man.
When Hans was six years old, Hitler became Chancellor of Germany, and when Hans was twelve World War II began. At sixteen, he was required to leave the tenth grade and enter military training as a Marine with specialized training on one-man torpedoes. The war ended before he was ever ordered on a mission. At eighteen he was taken as a prisoner of war under the British, but was soon released to return to his home in Osterburg. After finishing high school, Hans studied law and theology at the Universities of Bamberg and Gottingen. After earning a degree in jurisprudence he served as assistant district attorney for Lower Saxony.
In 1956, Hans came to the United States and served as Specialist for Consular and Legal Affairs with the German Consulate in Atlanta. His time in this country confirmed his desire to fulfill a childhood dream of immigrating, and he did so as an unskilled laborer with his first job as short-order cook at the Fort Gordon bus station! Hans became a US citizen in 1970.
Hans earned a Master’s degree in Germanics at Florida State University and became a professor there. He went on to teach at Florida Presbyterian and was later hired by the State of Florida with the Education Practices Commission. In 1973, he was hired as the first Executive Director of the State of Georgia Professional Practices Commission where he served until his retirement in 1993.
His was preceded in death by his parents, Johannes and Elisabeth Dankhof Schacht, his infant son Stephan, and his son Hans-J. Schacht, Jr.
Hans is survived by his wife of 31 years – Rebecca Nix Schacht – whom he lovingly called “My Becky”, son Bryan and wife Alecia, daughter Hanna Byers and husband Brandon, step-daughter Lori Peppers and husband Shon, and step-son Staton West and wife Kirsten, ten grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Hans was under the care of Northeast Georgia Medical Center Hospice for a year. He and his family are deeply grateful for the conscientious and loving care provided throughout that time, especially by Devra, Patti, and Heather.
Hans was a member of the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection in Sautee where a memorial service will be held on Sunday, October 15th at 3:00PM. The address of the church is 1755 Duncan Bridge Road, Sautee, GA 30571.
The family requests that anyone wishing to make a contribution in Hans’ memory please consider Resurrection Episcopal Church Preschool or building fund or Love Lights for Hospice of Northeast Georgia Medical Center.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at HillsideMemorialChapel.com.
Funeral arrangements by Hillside Memorial Chapel, Clarkesville. 706-754-6256