Walter Frederick Gutzmer, 99, of Manchester, husband of the late Elena “Helen” (Accornero) Gutzmer passed away peacefully on Monday, April 8, 2019. He was born in Willimantic and spent his early years in Coventry, but resided most of his life in Manchester. He was the son of the late Richard and Aldea (Pimpare) Gutzmer and was predeceased by siblings Lawrence Gutzmer and Dorothy Fedus. Walt was an employee at Cheney Brothers while a member of the CT Army National Guard. When WWII began he proudly served as Staff Sergeant with the Anti-Tank Company 169th Infantry in the South Pacific Campaign; engaged in the Guadalcanal, Northern Solomons; and New Guinea Campaigns – Aitape Operation and the Philippine Islands Campaign – Luzon Operation in which he was honorably awarded a Philippine Liberation Ribbon w/Bronze Star, a Purple Heart, American Defense Service Medal, and Asiatic Pacific Theater Campaign Ribbon among others. He kept in touch with many of his veteran comrades and attended many reunions. After the war he joined the Manchester Police force and then security for Pratt & Whitney Aircraft for 35 years until retiring in 1982.Walt was an avid outdoorsman enjoying fishing and hunting; played country western music & polkas on his guitar and harmonica; he watched UConn Women’s basketball and the NY Yankees; and cooked Pizelles to share with everyone. Most of all, being with friends and family was what made him happiest and that is what he attributed his long life to. His favorite song was “You Are My Sunshine” and his caring neighbors on N. Elm Street brought sunshine to him every day “We are like family here”. He was very proud of his devoted family: sons William Gutzmer (Diane) of Vernon; David Gutzmer of Vernon; his daughter Gail Peck (Jeff) of Manchester; grandchildren Erick Gutzmer of Old Saybrook and Mark Gutzmer, Christopher Peck (Brooke) of West Hartford, Kathryn Paone (John) of Jenkintown, PA, Rachel Ficarra (Tommy) of Somers, Rebecca Crewell & family of Broad Brook. Six great-grandchildren; his sister-in-law Gilda (Accornero) Kravontka; niece and nephews Carolyn Hill and Michael & Paul Kravontka. Walt’s family wishes to thank Diane “Hon” for her compassion, care and companionship of Walter and all his faithful friends who kept in touch writing. Jeff of CCCI, VNA of CT RN’s Julie and Mary, APRN Wendy, Crestfield Rehab Facility Wing 4 staff, and Athena Hospice Care. Calling hours will be held at Manchester Funeral Home, 142 East Center St. in Manchester on Friday, April 12, 2019 from 4-7 pm. A celebration of Walt’s life will be held on Saturday, April 13, 2019 at 10:30 am at the funeral home followed by burial with military honors in St. James Cemetery, Manchester. Memorial donations will honor Walter and carry on his passion for animals & nature. They may be made to the Elizabeth Rose Park Conservancy, CT Humane Society, CT Audubon Society or charity of your preference. To leave an online condolence please visit www.manchesterfh.com
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