On Aug. 25, 2023, Mr. Walter Leon Anthony Jr. passed peacefully in his home with his beloved wife, Margaret “Peggy” Louise Kohler Anthony, at his side. Walter’s memory lives on with his family and friends while the strength of his love transcends lifetimes.
Walter was born to the late Henrietta Katherine Selmon Hengeli and the late Walter Leon Anthony Sr. on Jan. 9, 1937, in Trenton, N.J. Growing up, Walter often landed the lead parts in his school plays and operettas and loved playing soccer and running track alongside his friends.
His dutifulness led him to become captain of his elementary school safety patrol, to be granted citizenship awards, and to join the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve in high school on July 1, 1956.
But with his love for art and design, he studied at the Trenton Junior College School of Industrial Arts and dreamed of becoming a draftsman. It wasn’t long before he reached this goal while working at the RCA as a design specialist, eventually contributing to momentous projects such as the Hubble Space Telescope and Apollo missions. In 1959 Walter met his future wife, Peggy, when he escorted her on a blind date to her senior prom. They quickly fell in love, marrying just over a year later at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Trenton, N.J., on Oct. 29, 1960.
Walter was a family man to the core, and alongside Peggy, raised their three children in his childhood home on William Street. Through years of camping trips, beach vacations, Boy Scouts, soapbox derbies, and school musicals, Walter was filled with pride and joy as he watched his sons and daughter grow up.
After their children were grown, married, and starting to build families of their own, Walter and Peggy relocated to Virginia, where they settled in the close-knit community of Captains Cove. There they spent time crafting, golfing, fishing, and going to Burger Night with their many new friends, including Mike and Robin Lawson, Dave and Sandy Amos, and Paul and Mary Beth Margeson.
Walter was known by all for his wide smile, his love of chocolate chip cookies and cherry vanilla ice cream, his jokes and playful rule-breaking, the beautifully handcrafted furniture and art he made, and most of all for the immensity of his love for his wife Peggy. They were best friends — inseparable companions always up for a new adventure, even after Walter was diagnosed with Parkinson’s.
Walter’s resolve and perseverance in never letting Parkinson’s get in the way of his life or his ability to be there for his loved ones was an inspiration to all who knew him.
Walter’s presence was grand, beautiful, comforting, and unforgettable. He lit up every room he entered, leaving an endless trail of laughter and smiles everywhere he went.
Walter was predeceased by his father Walter Leon Anthony Sr., his mother, Henrietta Katherine Selmon Hengeli, his stepfather, Joseph Hengeli, and his sister, Mary Frances Anthony Potter.
He is survived by his wife, Margaret “Peggy” Louise Kohler Anthony; his three children, William Walter Anthony and wife, Patricia, Terri-Ann Anthony Chiu and husband, William, and Walter Leon Anthony III and wife, Rose; his cousin, Dotti Rittenberry and husband, Kevin; his grandchildren, Jeffrey, Jill, Anthony, Walter, Katherine, Isabelle, Vincenzo, and Victoria; his nieces and nephews, Karen Edwards, Linda Potter, Vincent Russo, Ronald “Bud” Russo, Richard Russo, and Robert Russo; several grandnieces, grandnephews, great-grand-bunnies, a great-grand cat, and a great-grand-dog.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, Sept. 2, 2023, at 11 a.m., at the Holy Name of Jesus Church, 1913 Old Virginia Road, Pocomoke City, Md., followed by a reception in the church hall.
A burial will take place on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023, at 10 a.m., at Greenwood Cemetery, 1800 Hamilton Avenue, Hamilton, N.J., followed by a reception.
A Celebration of Life will follow in January 2024 with details to be determined. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations are made in Walter’s memory to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research at www.michaeljfox.org