SUN CITY, Ariz.
Walter Paul Schnellinger, a volunteer of 18 years at Banner Boswell Medical Center, died March 23, 2010, in Sun City, Ariz. He was 89 and lived in Sun City since 1984.
Born in Peru Township, Ohio, in a log house, he was one of eight children of Carl and Alma Schnellinger. He was a graduate of Monroeville High School and served in World War II at Burtonwood Air Base, England.
He married Margaret Rose Tyler in 1946 and built a house for his family in Huron Township, near Sandusky. He worked for Zoellner Plumbing and supervised plumbing, heating and air conditioning construction projects across northern Ohio, including many schools.
He was a hero to his wife and daughters for his hard work, patience and humor. They firmly believed he could do anything or build anything. His skill at indestructible carpentry inspired the family saying, "What Walter has joined, no man can put asunder."
In 1976 he won the Spirit of '76 Ohio lottery, which allowed him to buy custom golf clubs, take his wife to Europe and retire early. The couple also made numerous trips across North America as well as to China and Russia.
In Sun City he enjoyed relief from arthritis as well as swimming, square dancing, jewelry making and stained glass lamps and decorations -- and near-daily golf. He served as a marshal for PGA and LPGA tournaments and continued to golf three times a week until his final illness.
He devoted 9,869 hours as a volunteer at Banner Boswell, where he was well known -- as much for his good nature as his ability to repair wheelchairs.
A devout Catholic all his life, he attended Sts. Joachim and Anna Church in Sun City.
His wife died Oct. 29, 2007, and grandson, Jared Ryerson, died in 1983.
He is survived by a brother, Raymond Schnellinger of Norwalk; sister, Mary Trares of Wadsworth, Ohio; four daughters, Ann Ravenstine of New York City, Chris Ryerson of Phoenix, Maggie Schnellinger of Trumansburg, N.Y., and Lisa Schnellinger of Jasper, Ga.; two grandchildren, Abby Schnellinger of Ithaca, N.Y., and Erik Bloomquist of Savannah, Ga.; and three great-grandchildren.