Walter E Wenger “Walt”Jan 31, 1945 - May 23, 2019 Passed peacefully at his home in San Carlos, California at the age of 74. Devoted husband of 40 years to Benedicte Snerding Wenger, loving father of Babette Snerding Babich (Peter), Natalie Wenger (Daryl). Beloved grandfather to Pierson, Braden, Lauren, Hunter and Owen, older brother to Fred Wenger (Beverly-Jean). He is preceded in death by his parents Fritz and Marie, his older brother Bill Wenger and sister Anna-Marie Jones (Lee).Born in San Mateo, Walter attended Capuchino High School in San Bruno where he excelled in 3 sports: football, wrestling, and track. In track he threw the shot put and discus and still holds the record for throwing the longest discus 57 years later!!!
He received the “Outstanding Player Award” 1961-1962.Walt loved “contact” sports. He proceeded to play football and wrestle at the College of San Mateo. There he received NCJC 2nd-HWT award (1963) and Most Valuable Player CSM (1963). Some other awards he was given in 1963 are: CSM 63 INV.Tourn.1st HWT lbs N.C.S- J.C. Tourn 64 2nd unlimited CAL.POLY J.C. HWT- 2nd place (1964). He continued his college education at Weber State, Ogden, Utah on a full ride football scholarship. There he earned his bachelor’s degree in Physical Education.
In 1965, he received the Weber County Award for Weber State College’s Big Sky Conference. “Football Champions! Won 8 lost 1!” During the summers he worked for the Forest Service, stationed close to French Meadows in a fire lookout tower. He loved being in the forest and driving the huge water truck on remote fire roads. After college, Walt decided to return to his beloved home in San Bruno.
There he started a career of teaching for the South San Francisco Unified School District which lasted several decades. He coached football, taught physical education, math and his favorite life science. Walt loved the ocean so much that while diving for abalone he would collect “interesting specimens” to share and dissect with his students in class. During this time he also became a commercial abalone diver and fed his family and friends VERY well. Not surprising, he was well liked by his students and peers. It was during this time that his close colleagues and friends nicknamed him the HEAD SHRINKER. He was also passionate about fishing and shared the sport with his children, grandchildren and friends.
Walt loved his BlueGrass family, and he never missed the yearly BlueGrass Festival in Grass Valley on Father’s Day. He also spent many summers traveling with his family to visit relatives in Switzerland, France, Denmark and England. In his later years he looked forward to his weekly poker group comprised of a close group of loyal friends who never failed to bring him laughter, and when the cards were good even some cash! Walt was such a wonderful husband, and a fantastic dad and role model for his two daughters. He loved watching his grandkids play baseball, soccer, football, volleyball, and basketball.
He was respected for his wisdom, unfailing generosity and gentle spirit - unless you encountered him on the football field. His keen sense of humor, boundless goodwill and affection for family and friends is how we will remember him. He was our rock and he will be dearly missed. A special thanks to Finau for providing outstanding care for Walt during his final years. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Parkinson’s Institute and Clinical Center at 675 Almanor Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA 94085.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, July 14th at the Wenger residence from 11am - 4pm.