Walter J. Swartzer, age 90, of The Lighthouse of Waconia, formerly of Watertown, passed away peacefully Monday, Sept. 12, 2016, surrounded by family.
Mass of Christian Burial will take place Monday, Sept. 19 at 11 a.m. at St. Mary of Czestochowa Catholic Church in rural Delano. Interment with military honors will follow in the church cemetery.
There will be visitation Sunday, Sept. 18 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the church, with a 3:30 p.m. Knights of Columbus Rosary. Visitation will continue Monday from 10 to 11 a.m., prior to the Mass.
Arrangements are with the Iten Funeral Home in Delano.
Walter was born Oct. 31, 1925, in Woodland Township, Wright County, to George and Susan (Gallus) Swartzer.
He graduated from Delano High School, and enlisted in the Navy during World War II.
Walter was united in marriage to Irene E. Salonek Oct. 4, 1952, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Watertown.
Employed at Minnesota Rubber Company for 34 years, Walt also was part of a family business doing sewer and septic work until his retirement.
He served as trustee at St. Mary of Czestochowa Catholic Church in Delano for 60 years; and was an active member of the Knights of Columbus and the Fourth Degree.
An avid outdoorsman, Walter enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping, and biking.
Over the years, he had amassed a large beer can collection, even though he didn’t drink beer. He was also known for doing antler mounts of the family’s deer antlers.
Most of all, Walter was a loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle, and a friend to many.
He was preceded in death by his parents; siblings Gladys, Donald, George Jr., Jack, and Marvin Swartzer; parents-in-law Louis and Frances Salonek; and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Tom Kuka, Leo Blackketter, Emmett Lynch, Louie Bury, Sandy Swartzer, Mary Helen Swartzer, Marguerite Swartzer, Laurie Swartzer, Marvin Salonek, Dorothy and George Campbell.
Walt is survived by his wife of 63 years, Irene; children David (Mary) Swartzer, Ronald (Carmen) Swartzer, James (Kristie) Swartzer, Julie (Mark) Hecksel, and Kenneth (Jackie) Swartzer; 10 grandchildren: Heather (Kristopher) Hanson, Sarah (Kyle) Grandahl, Ryan (Allison) Swartzer, Christopher (Althea) Swartzer, Jennifer (Josh) Converse, Cassandra (Kyle) Kuntz, James Swartzer Jr., Ashley (Eric) Mattson, Nicole Hecksel (Corey Henderson), and Joshua (Samantha) Swartzer; and 15 great-grandchildren: Luke and Emily Hanson, Samantha and Matthew Grandahl, Tyler, Emma, Jackson and Ava Swartzer, Nora Dubay, Ryker Converse, Fred and Gil Mattson, Carter Motzko; and two on the way.
Walter is further survived by his siblings, Lorraine Lynch, Betty Bury, Joe (Dorothy) Swartzer, Luverne Blackketter, Marian Kuka, Susan (Ed) Windsperger, Bob (Mary Lynn) Swartzer, Ervin (Renee) Swartzer, Gene Swartzer, Tony Swartzer, and Peter (Alice) Swartzer; and sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Rosemary Swartzer, Izy Salonek, and Marge (Mylen) Cardinal.