On December 22, 2021, Walt Boettcher passed away at Vicinia Gardens in Otsego, Michigan. Born April 21, 1936, in Joliet Illinois, Walt was the son of Walter H. and Gertrude (Lauer). He graduated from Otsego High School in 1954, where he was a four-sport athlete (cross-country, basketball, baseball, and track) and went on to obtain a bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University in 1959. Later in his career he returned to school to obtain his master’s degree in administration.
In 1958, Walt began his 32-year career in education. He served as a middle school social studies/phys ed teacher, a high school cross country coach, Assistant Middle School Principal and Assistant Superintendent in charge of operations and curriculum all within the Otsego Public School system. He retired in June 1991. Walt was always proud to be an Otsego Bulldog and in 2001 was inducted into the Otsego High School Athletic Hall of Fame.
Walt was a talented handyman who expressed his love, to his children and grandchildren, with his willingness to take on any household project that might be presented to him. He enjoyed lawn care and washing his car and had a way of perfecting every task he tackled. He continued to enjoy sports throughout his life, both watching and playing. He especially enjoyed golfing, watching golf and attending golf tournaments whenever the opportunity arose. Walt enjoyed traveling, by train and by car. His was not a “hurry up and get there mentality”, but one that enjoyed the journey. He traveled often to Florida by train to visit family and took trips east and west to see as many historical sites as possible. He also enjoyed his 18 years of chaperoning the Otsego High School senior trip to Washington D.C. Walt’s favorite trip, though, may have been any walk to an ice cream parlor where he would treat whatever lucky grandchildren happened to be with him. He was a member of the Otsego Rotary and First Congregational Church of Otsego. It was at First Congregational on August 16, 1958, where he married his wife of 63 years, Nancy Benedict, who survives.
Also surviving are his three children, Linda (Scott) Sleeman of Otsego, MI, Tom (Debbie) Boettcher of Destin, FL, and Jill (Kevin) Barclay of Jackson, MI; 12 grandchildren, Ben (Nicole), Alex (Kaylee), Molly (Sam), Stephanie (Jesse), Mitchell, Corey (Morgan), Samantha, Erin (TJ), Abigail (Jason), Cole (Elizabeth), Travis, and Bryan; 10 great-grandchildren; brother Dick (Pat) Boettcher, and many nieces and nephews.
Walt was preceded in passing by his brother Jim and his parents.
Walt was cremated according to his wishes, and friends and family may visit to pay their respects to Walt and his family on Saturday, January 8, 2022, beginning at 10:00 AM at First Congregational Church of Otsego. A memorial service will begin at 11:00 AM officiated by Pastor Bruce VanDer Kolk.
Burial of his ashes will take place at Mountain Home Cemetery at a later date.
Masks are recommended.
Contributions in memory of Walt may be made to First Congregational Church of Otsego or Wings of Hope Hospice.
Messages of condolence may be posted at www.WinkelFuneralHome.com