Walter Edward Schilling, 75
Walter Edward Schilling, age 75 of New Hampton, died Friday, Jan. 3, 2020, at Colonial Manor in Elma.
A memorial service honoring Walter’s life will be held 10:30 a.m. Saturday, June 10, 2023, at the Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory in New Hampton.
There will be a one-hour visitation prior to the service.
Inurnment will follow at Calvary Cemetery in New Hampton.
Online condolences for the Schilling family may be left at www.hugebackfuneralhome.com.
Walter Edward Schilling was born April 2, 1944, in New Hampton, IA, the son of Edward and Marie (Morrissey) Schilling.
Walt grew up on a small farm southwest of New Hampton. He was involved in all aspects of the farm operation. While hogs were his favorite farm animal, he enjoyed working with the farm machinery even more. One of his fondest memories was overhauling a tractor while in high school. Money was tight on most small farms in the 1950s, and Walt’s family was no exception. It was difficult to get ahead with hogs selling for $10 per hundredweight one year and $5 per hundredweight next. Walt used to joke that growing up on the working end of a shovel taught him the true value of hard work, so he was going to college.
After graduating from New Hampton High School in 1962, he was fortunate to gain an appointment with the cooperative engineering program at General Motors Institute in Flint, Michigan. GMI was a GM-owned and operated co-op engineering school which allowed students to support their studies in alternating 6-week work/study periods year-round, thereby obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in engineering in five years. He credited his ability to compete for such an appointment to the education he received at New Hampton High School.
Walt’s career in engineering took him from working for Buick in Flint, Michigan, to Collins Radio in Cedar Rapids. He later moved to the Minneapolis area. In 1981 he left the Dayton Hudson Corporation to join the U.S. Postal Service as an engineer in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Bulk Mail Center in Eagan, Minnesota. In 1988, he transferred to Anchorage, Alaskaka as the manager of the Engineering Technical Unit for the Alaska District of the USPS.
After moving to Alaska, he left the Minnesota Walleye behind and took up fishing for halibut and king salmon. When sport fishing regulations for King Salmon became so limiting, he bought a fifth-wheel trailer and started camping in the many small state parks around the area.
His other sports interests were mainly as a spectator, where he preferred amateur live venues over televised professional events. In Minnesota, he videotaped rough stock events for the Minnesota High School Rodeo Association and made tapes available to the riders. He enjoyed watching Golden Gloves boxing in Minnesota and served as a judge for the Thursday night fights in Anchorage. He would often stop by a local baseball or soccer field on the way home from work to watch a game.
New Hampton always held a special place in his heart. After he left for college, he seldom got back to his hometown, but he never forgot it and moved back in retirement. When the Chickasaw Wellness Center was built, he contributed the funding for the indoor rubberized track as a way of helping pay back the community that had helped him so much.
Walt is survived by two brothers, Joseph (Barbara) Schilling of Jacksonville, Arkansas, and John (Louise) Schilling of Los Angeles; and sister, Jeanne Schilling of Elma.
He was preceded in death by his parents.