Merit Frederick Schortzman was born on July 26, 1949 to Alton and Irene (Zeeb) Schortzman in Scotland, South Dakota. He was baptized on August 21, 1949 by Rev. Rieger at the Petersburg Congregational Church near Lesterville. On June 7, 1964, Merit was onfirmed by Rev. Bettenhausen at the United Church of Christ. Merit graduated from Scotland High School in May 1967.
On August 8, 1971, Merit was united in marriage to Dianne Mehlhaf at the Zion Reformed Church at Menno. To this union two sons were born, Bret and Jared.
Merit farmed all his life until his health declined. He entered the Good Samaritan Society of Scotland on March 27, 2017. Following a long battle with diabetes and Myelodyplastic Disease Syndrome (a form of blood cancer), Merit fell asleep in Jesus on Monday, October 30, 2017 having attained the age of 68 years, 3 months, and 4 days. Merit was a kind and gentle man with a dry sense of humor.
He is survived by his wife of 46 years, Dianne Schortzman of Scotland; sons: Bret (Mary) Schortzman of Rock Valley, IA and Jared Schortzman of Scotland, SD; grandchildren: Cade, Brianna, and Erica Schortzman; his mother, Irene Schortzman of Lesterville; brothers: Mel (Linda) Schortzman of Clark, SD and Roger (Marilyn) Schortzman of Lesterville; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: Harley Mehlhaf of Hurley, SD, Myron (Linda) Mehlhaff of Freeman, SD, Dale (Earla) Mehlhaff of Freeman, SD; many nieces and nephews; and aunts and uncles: Vernon (Vivian) Gall, Norma Christensen, Ida Sayler, Ruth Mehlhaf, Caroline Roth, and Darlene Mehlhaf.
Merit was preceded in death by his father Alton Schortzman, father and mother-in-law Ruben and Leona Mehlhaf, sister-in-law Janet Mehlhaf, and nephew Bronson Miller.