OBITUARY: Walter W. Bergen
May 15, 1933 – Dec. 5, 2019
December 19, 2019 | View PDF
Walter Bergen was greatly loved and respected as a husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather and friend. The oldest child of Pete and Ada Bergen, Walter was born in a small house on Sullivan Road west of Enos Lane. He attended Rio Bravo School, Shafter High and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Walter married Judith Nelson in 1953. They were blessed with four sons.
Walter started his career working for the Hollister family in Lompoc and retired as a sales manager for BW Implement Co. in Buttonwillow. Along the way he showed us how to love God and love your neighbor in many positions and capacities in the church and in the community: school board, 4-H community leader, Active 20-30 Club, Far West Equipment Dealers Association, church moderator, deacon and fest committee, including providing coffee and doughnuts for some informal fellowship before the service; something he thoroughly enjoyed.
From Lompoc, Walter and Judith moved back home to live and raise their four boys between the home they bought in Shafter, the Thompson/Peltier Ranch in Buttonwillow and the John and Jeanette Hernstedt farm in Wasco.
When the tractors came to idle, retirement found him a loving husband of 66 years, a huggable father, grandfather and great grandfather. He returned to woodworking, building furniture upon request for family and over 20 Little Free Libraries that stand in Shafter as well as in Glennville, Fresno and Visalia.
Walter leaves his sisters, Deanna Nelson and Marilyn Reed; his wife of 66 years, Judith; and their four sons and their families: Stanley and Lee Ann (Howlett), Gregory and Ruth (Krueger, deceased), Phillip and Carol (Kliewer), Clinton and Carla (Lepp); grandchildren Sarah Bergdahl, Melissa Bergen, Laura Thiessen, Jacob Bergen, Emily Kate Chan Boeckh, Hillary Welsh, John-Mark Bergen, Maria Marzullo, Hannah Bergen Ziyadinova, Gabrielle Bergen-Schmid, Nicolas Bergen; great grandchildren Luke, Seamus, Benjamin and Penelope Thiessen, Violet Bergen, Ezekiel and Zoey Marzullo, Ruthie and Asher Welsh and 1-year-old Walter Bergen.
A graveside service will be held Sunday, Dec. 22, beginning at 11 a.m. at Shafter Memorial Park. A funeral service will follow at Peters Funeral Home in Shafter, beginning at 2 p.m.