He was born in Wilmington, DE on March 29, 1929. Walter graduated from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in 1951, with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering and earned an M.S. from the University of Connecticut School of Engineering in 1968.
He was married to Beverly Thrall Beach on May 18, 1957 and both were residents of Orange, CT from 1962-2016, moving to Brookdale Woodbridge in December 2016. Walter was a longtime member of Christ and the Epiphany Church, East Haven and attended the Church of the Good Shepherd, Orange.
He worked for Olin as Chemical Engineer from 1951-1963 and served in the US Army from August 2, 1954-July 27, 1956. Walter worked as an Associate Professor at Norwalk State Technical College from 1963-1991 and was an active member in in the CT Chapter of the American Federation of Teachers.
Walter made friends everywhere he went, and could be found completing a NY Times crossword puzzle, or assembling a jigsaw puzzle in the common room at Brookdale, Woodbridge. He was a longtime member of the CT Chapter of the Appalachian Mountain & Trail Club & and the Tuesday Hikers Club. His favorite place in the world was his lake house, which he designed and built himself in the 1960s.
Walter is survived by wife, Beverly Beach Bretthauer of Woodbridge, sister, Frances Lydia Hecker of Lower Burrell, PA; brother Tom Bretthauer of Fullerton, CA; sons David (Pingsheng Chen) of Worcester, MA, Fred (Colleen Sprague Bretthauer) of Hebron, CT, and Jerry (Holly Bretthauer) of Orange; as well as grandchildren Benjamin Marshall Bretthauer of Hebron, CT, Emily Jane Bretthauer and Grace Beverly Bretthauer of Orange, and step-grandson Dr. Kevin Dong Han (Sara Oles Han) of Boston, MA.
His family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, August 10, 2017 at the Clancy-Palumbo Funeral Home (Clancy Funeral Home) 43 Kirkham Ave., East Haven.
All are invited to meet and attend the funeral service on Friday, August 11 at 10 a.m. in Christ and the Epiphany Church, 39 Park Place, East Haven followed by a 12 p.m. (Noon) graveside service at Orange Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations for continued Parkinson’s research at https://www.michaeljfox.org.