Walter G. Bruska
1925 - 2018
Walter G. Bruska

South Burlington - Walter G. Bruska, 93, passed away on Wednesday, November 28, 2018, leaving a glorious legacy for family and friends.

Walt was born May 31, 1925 in Herkimer, N.Y. to George Bruska and Julia Fistick Bruska.

After graduating from Mohawk High School in 1943, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps serving in World War II in the Pacific Theater.

Walt married his high school sweetheart, Anne King, during the war on April 14, 1945. Upon returning from war in 1946, he enrolled at Cornell University where he excelled in football, graduating in 1950.

He then became an assistant to the President of Cornell University as well as an assistant football coach.

Walt had an illustrious career as an administrator and advocate for higher education, serving as Director of Development at Cornell University, Vice-President at Springfield College, University of Vermont, Kent State University, and Alaska Pacific University.

He also was Executive Director of Greater Burlington Industrial Corporation, Executive Secretary at Champlain Valley Exposition and Vice-President of the John E. Fetzer Institute. Walt volunteered in many organizations, was a Rotarian, a past President of Prevent Child Abuse Vermont, and a board member for the Vermont Sports Hall of Fame.

Walt is survived by his beloved family, daughter Charlotte and husband Brad Gardner of Colchester, and their family, Ryan Gardner, Rich and Allison Gardner, and Brooke and Matt Martin; his daughter, Nancy and husband Mike Brisbin of Naples, Fla. and their family, Tim and Jessica Brisbin, Jamie and Mike Kelly, and Jeff and Grete Brisbin, as well as 12 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Anne, his son, Biff, and his second wife, Joanne.

A celebration of his life will be held at the College Street Congregational Church, 265 College St. in Burlington at 2 p.m. Saturday December 15, 2018.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial contribution to the Cornell University Athletics, 512 Campus Road, Teagle Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853; UVM Athletics, Attn: Jeff Schulman, 97 Spear Street, Burlington, VT 05405; the McClure Miller Respite House, 3113 Roosevelt Highway, Colchester, VT 05446; Prevent Child Abuse VT, 203 Country Club Road, Montpelier, VT 05602; or the charity of your choice.

A Complete obituary will appear next week on the Corbin and Palmer Funeral Home Website:

Published by The Burlington Free Press on Dec. 2, 2018.
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Celebration of Life
College Street Congregational Church
265 College St., Burlington, VT
Please consider a donation as requested by the family.
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24 Entries
I first met Walt at the Cornell club of Vermont gathering at his family place on the lake. We would also meet up at the Dartmouth games in November. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. My son went to Cornell and my two daughters attended University of Vermont. Both institutions Walt was connected too. I loved hearing stories from Walt about Cornell Football in the late 40's and coaching in the 50's. Cornell Football has lost a real gentlemen, so has the state of Vermont.
Bob Weggler
December 18, 2018
We thank you, Grandpa Walt, for stepping up and being the father figure the William's family needed. You married a beautiful soul in 1978, my dear grandmother, Joanne. You were the love of her life. You loved her in a way that noone else could or even begin to possibly understand. And noone else needs to understand your relationship other than the two of you. You stepped up and became a father and grandfather to all of us. You walked my mother down the aisle at her wedding and married my brother and his wife and my cousins and their spouses. You brought me to my first hockey and basketball games at UVM, you taught us ice fishing, hunting, and I had venison for the first time with you. I caught my first fish with you. I'll always remember your smile and wink, that made everyone feel part of some special secret. I'll remember you watching your football games with your pipe, talking to my dad about the games. The times we spent at camp and rowing out onto the lake with our poles or jumping into the lake off the dock. You were there for all our celebrations and tragedies. I'll never forget the time you brought me to your church and had me stand up in front of everyone as the pastor introduced me to everyone. It was my first year of college and you took me out that day to help me feel more at home. I went to my first concert at the fair with my cousin because of you. It's one of my best memories I have with her. And it's because of you. You always made us feel like we were your own and to us, you were our father and grandfather, regardless of the origin. You were a true family man and that showed in so many ways. You were so much part of the William's family and we love you and thank you for all you did for us and Grandma Joanne and always being part of our lives. We love you and will forever cherish our memories of you. I wish we were able to say goodbye, but I know, you know, how much you meant to all of us. We love you so much, Grandpa Walt. There are so many people that have been waiting patiently for you up above and I can only imagine the smile your face when you see them all again. Until we meet again, we love you, Grandpa Walt. Love, Erin
Erin Capobianco
December 17, 2018
Walter was always a great representative for Cornell University, and at alumni gatherings we always had a nice chat regarding our respective experiences in athletics. He marveled at (and supported) how women's athletics grew, and I shared my experiences from the rowing team. He was so affable! And always enthusiastic for the Big Red. He will be missed. I'm lucky to have crossed paths with him!
Meredith Breiland
December 14, 2018
Sorry for your loss. Walt was one of a kind. He cared about everyone. I enjoyed visiting with him and helping him with his computer and watching his Cornell football video's
Dave Turner
December 8, 2018
Rich Gardner
December 7, 2018
Rich Gardner
December 7, 2018
Rich Gardner
December 7, 2018
Charlotte So very sorry to hear of your Fathers passing.Thoughts and prayers for you and family at this difficult time.Your Dad touch many lives and sure their memories of him will always bring a smile to their face.God bless you and may he R.I.P.
Bill Argetsinger
December 7, 2018
So Sorry for your loss Charlotte and your family
Cindy Carey
December 6, 2018
Condolences to your family. May the peace of God comfort you and give you strength through this difficult time.
December 5, 2018
I was privileged to work in the office at Champlain Valley Fair with Walter and what a pleasure it was. He was always kind, thoughtful and patient. He will be missed but always remembered.
Betty Rogers
December 5, 2018
Betty Rogers
December 5, 2018
What a great person was Walt Bruska. With all the accomplishments he achieved, he was still Walt, a man who was so humble, and always had a smile on his face when he saw you.

Walt was one of our great football alumni, both as a player and for what he continued to do for the Big Red gridders.

He will solely be missed.
Dave Wohlhueter, former Cornell SID
Dave Wohlhueter
December 3, 2018

I am sorry to hear about Walt's passing. He was a great man and an outstanding Cornellian. I enjoyed the handful of times I got to speak with him about his days at Cornell. Our best to you and your family

Tom & Barb MacLeod
Tom MacLeod
December 3, 2018
Tom MacLeod
December 3, 2018
To Charlotte and family,
I was fortunate to have met your dad on a few football occasions and always looked forward to seeing him and sharing Cornell football stories. Deepest condolences on his passing. He, along with may of his teammates, represented the true values we derive from athletics and made the rest of us very proud to be part of their legacy.
Fred Devlin
December 3, 2018
Several years ago on a beautiful fall day at Schoellkopf, Walt and I were honored to be co-recipients of Cornell Football's Lifetime Achievement Award. We bonded quite fast and very well at that ceremony. I have fond and lasting memories of having known him and his many contributions to Cornell in general and Big Red Football in particular. God Bless the memory of this wonderful man and I add my sincere condolences to his family and friends.

George Slocum '62, Houston TX
December 3, 2018
In a world where kind and generous people make you glad, Walt was that man who made you joyous and grateful to know him. Over the span of some 65 years the number of thoughtful, funny, inspiring memories that are brought to mind by his passing are uncountable.
Steve Martin
December 3, 2018
On behalf of all of Walt's friends in the Cornell Football Association I want to express our condolences to his family on his passing. Walt had great success at Cornell both on and off the field and was a life long supporter of Cornell football. He will be deeply missed but he will live in our memory for ever. Go Big Red.
John Morehouse
December 3, 2018
On behalf of all of Walt's friends in the Cornell Alumni Football Association I want to express our condolence's to his family on his passing. Walt had great success at Cornell on and off of the field and was a life long supporter of the Cornell football program. He will be deeply missed but his memory will never be forgotten. Go Big Red.
John Morehouse
December 3, 2018
Kindest neighbor who leaves so many memories of basketball in his driveway, beautiful tulips every Spring, walk across the road steady and firm with his fresh garden vegetables he shared, sheetrock bucket for a Christmas tree stand, and so many other memories of you today Walter with a smile on our faces.
Thoughts to you Charlotte and Nancy and to your family. Maura, Clark, Doug and Tricia Pierson
December 3, 2018
Walt was one of my favorites to walk through the door when I was Town Clerk in Shelburne. We were fellow Rotarians and he always had a positive attitude, a great smile and was a great conversationalist. May he Rest In Peace.
Colleen Haag
December 2, 2018
I am so sad to see this. Walter was a wonderful friend at Champlain valley exposition, always willing to give advice but understanding when i didn't take it. He was truly a wonderful man and will be missed by many. Hugs to the family.
Vicky Lilley
December 2, 2018
Sending up our sympathy to Walt's family at this time. We knew him as a dedicated gardener at Long Point in North Ferrisburgh. He shared his knowledge and tips about growing and saving our harvest. May he Rest In Peace.
Catherine & Harry Varney
December 2, 2018
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