Schwabe, Walter Helmut And Mildred

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Walter H. Schwabe, born March 25, 1930 in Irvington, N.J. passed on from this life on April 7, 2020 at The Chelsea at Montville in Montville, N.J. at 90 years old. Days later, as if in pursuit, his wife, Mildred F. Schwabe (Polhemus), born December 8, 1928 in Whippany, N.J. also passed on from the same place to join her husband on April 10, 2020 at age 91.

Loved by all who knew him as charming company, a meticulous hobbyist and a relentless jokester, Walt was most likely to be found tinkering in his workshop, fishing, volunteering at his church, or spending time with his cherished family and friends. A dedicated member of the former Orthodox Presbyterian Church of Whippany, Walt served the congregation and the surrounding community for decades along with Mildred. He was also a regular fixture at the East Hanover Deli in East Hanover, N.J., where he loved to shoot the breeze with his neighbors and friends over a cup of coffee.

Walt was a 1948 graduate of Boonton High School and 1951 graduate of the Academy of Aeronautics in Queens, N.Y. An army veteran who served in Germany during the Korean War, Walt went on to a successful career as an aviation mechanic. He ended his career at Jet Aviation in Morristown, N.J.

Walt had a gift for restoring machines, which he applied in both his work and his hobbies, especially remodeling his antique Ford Model A.

Admired as a quiet, dependable and service-minded caretaker, Mildred was a stalwart presence in her family, church, and community. Like her husband, she brought a sense of refinement and loving attention-to-detail to every task she undertook, whether maintaining her spotless home, raising her two boys, or working at her church or places of employment. She was an avid gardener who always had something beautiful or nutritious growing inside or out. Her perfect home-made meals—especially her apple pies—will never be forgotten by those privileged to savor them. She shared her husband’s love of travel and jumped at any chance to see a new place or enjoy quality time visiting family in Florida, Oregon, Tennessee, Cape Cod, or nearby in New Jersey.

Mildred was a 1947 graduate of Morristown High School and went on to work as a typist in Morristown, N.J. until shortly after her first son, Arthur, was born in 1958. She served her family as a full-time caretaker and homemaker while working part-time for the State of N.J.’s foster care system. She later extended her caretaker role to many families.

Walt and Mildred are survived by their sons, Arthur Schwabe and his wife, Diana, and Walter and his wife, Kira; their grandchildren Holden and his wife, Jordana, Derek, Kimberly and her husband, Ryan, Denise, Jordan, Arthur (AJ), Kendra and Maria; great-grandchildren Emilia and Lana; Mildred’s sister, Gertrude, and many nieces and nephews. They were predeceased by Walt’s parents Walter and Frieda; his sister Margaret; Mildred’s parents, William and Edith; her sisters, Edith B. and Doris; and their beloved furry companions, Susie (I and II), Pierre and Lenny.

Plans for a memorial celebrating the lives of Walter and Mildred will be announced after the State of N.J. lifts limitations surrounding travel and gatherings. For updates on memorial service details, please email Walt Schwabe at In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Luke’s Reformed Episcopal Church of New Providence, N.J. (Howard Currie, Rector, 260 South St. New Providence N.J. 07974, 1-973-986-5352, or the National Veterans Foundation at

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