Walter F. Bender
March 31, 1926 — Dec. 1, 2017
Walter F. Bender of Oconomowoc passed away on December 1, 2017, at Shorehaven at the age of 91. Wally was the first of three sons of Walter and Helen Bender and was born on March 31, 1926, in Oconomowoc.
Wally graduated from Oconomowoc High School in 1944, where he played first base on the baseball team and trumpet in the school band. His friends called him “Blackie” due to his jet black hair.
Sports were an important part of Wally’s life and he played softball for many years in church baseball leagues after graduation. His athletic ability was remarkable since he was born with just one eye. Wally was a great Packers and Brewers fan and loved watching games on TV and listening to them on the radio in later years. Wally worked for over 30 years at Musebeck Shoe Company and eventually became the shipping department supervisor. Music was a very important part of Wally’s life and he played the trumpet for more than 30 years in the American Legion Band, traveling with the band to play in San Francisco, New York, the Tournament of Roses Parade, the Orange Bowl in Florida, and the 1953 and 1957 inaugurations of President Eisenhower in Washington, D.C. Later in life he said his favorite memory was “traveling with the Oconomowoc Legion Band.”
Wally will be remembered as a quiet, kind and gentle man with a strong faith. He was a member and regularly attended Dr. Martin Luther Church.
Wally was preceded in death by his parents and his brother Robert (Bob) of Sturgis, S.D. He is survived by his brother John (Margaret) of Yachats, Oregon; sister-in-law Marilyn Bender of Sturgis, S.D.; and nieces and nephews.
Graveside services will be held at 1 p.m. Friday, December 8, at La Belle Cemetery.
Schmidt & Bartelt Notbohm- Kreutzmann Funeral and Cremation Services is serving the family. For more information, call 262-5674459 or visit online at www.schmidtandbartelt.com.