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Walter Gnehm


1923 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Walter Gnehm Obituary
WALTER GNEHM On January 14, 2017, Walter Gnehm passed away peacefully at home. He was born on May 1, 1923 in Los Angeles, California. He graduated from Franklin High School in 1941 and went to work as an electrician. After Pearl Harbor he joined the Army where he served as an engineer in Iceland. In 1944 his unit was sent to Normandy and participated in the D-Day Invasion. He was also in the BattIe of the Bulge and the liberation of Paris. In 1945, Walter came home and married his high school sweetheart, Carole Sieck. They had four children. He went to work for the City of Los Angeles as an electrician at the Department of Water and Power. He worked there for 13 years. In 1960, he and Carole were divorced and Walter raised his children. He went to work for the City at LAX. He married Doris Wardley in 1962. He became interested in real estate and bought an apartment building. Later he bought another. He and Doris moved to Cherry Valley in 1978 after he retired from the city. After that he became a real estate agent at Cherry Valley Realty. His wife, Doris, died in 1989. After a while he began to date and married his third wife, Pansy Kumpe. They had many adventures together traveling around the world. In 1999 Walter bought an office building, La Mart Business Center, in Riverside. He did a lot of work there himself and said it kept him young. Walter did many kind things. He sponsored many relatives of his gardener's family to come to the United States from Viet Nam. He rescued, fostered and found new homes for dozens of homeless dogs (one on the freeway at his own peril) and he put several people through college. He made many friends and is sorely missed. Walter had COPD from his years of breathing in jet exhaust working on the runways at LAX. Eventually his body just wore out. Walter was preceded in death by his second wife, Doris; his brother, Robert; and his sons, Christopher (infant) and Larry (age 9). He is survived by his wife, Pansy of Beaumont; his son Alan Gnehm (Christine) of Spokane, WA; his daughter, Susannah Buchanan (Charlie) of Banning and seven grandchildren: Bridget Gnehm of Spokane, WA, Terra Caldwell (Paul Bando) of Castro Valley, CA, Orion Caldwell (Nicolet) of Tucson, AZ, Sundance Fadeeff (Marissa) of McKinleyville, CA, Serryn Fadeeff of Grants Pass, OR and Jaimie and Sarah Buchanan of Banning. He has two great granddaughters: Nadya and Scarlett Caldwell of Tucson, AZ. He is also survived by step children David Skidmore (Arlene) and Steve Skidmore (Cindy) of Beaumont, Janet Agdeppa (Hiram) of Moreno Valley, Claudette Carricosa and Gwen Jones. He had many step grandchildren and many, many step great grandchildren. The funeral will be held at Desert Lawn Cemetery in Calimesa, CA on January 31, 2017 at 10:00am in the chapel. Although Walter did not believe in organized religion, he believed in God and said he had gone to "the other side" when he had a heart attack in 1987. He said it was a wonderful place. In lieu of flowers you may send donations to the Ramona Animal Shelter in his memory if you wish. [email protected]
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Published in Press-Enterprise from Jan. 22 to Jan. 29, 2017
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