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Walter K. Halstead

Male 1916 - 2004  (88 years)


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  • Name Walter K. Halstead 
    Born 25 Jan 1916  Frankfurt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Biography Walter Karl Halstead, 88

    WORCESTER- Walter Karl Halstead, 88, died on the evening of Monday, August 2nd in his home at the Eisenberg Residence, 631 Salisbury Street, Worcester, with his wife of 63 years, Gertrude, daughters Alice and Celia, and daughter-in-law Bonnie by his side.

    He was born on January 25th, 1916 in Frankfurt-Main, Germany to Fridel Graefenberg and Julius (Halberstadt) Halstead. Walter spent much of his boyhood in the Swiss Alps where he loved to ski. He attended school on the island of Juist in the North Sea where he met his future wife, a fellow student. Due to increasing persecution of Jews by the German government, he continued his education at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.

    In 1936 he fled Europe with his parents and two brothers and settled in the United States, where he completed his education at MIT (B.S.E.E. '39) and Ohio State (M.S.'41).

    Walter married Gertrude Bendheim in 1941 soon after she arrived in New York City by ship, having escaped wartime Europe with his family's help. During World War II he worked on a project to improve radar technology for the Office of Scientific Research and Development. After teaching at MIT as an Instructor, he went on to Polaroid Corporation and W.S. Macdonald Company before starting a 31 year career at RCA Corporation. There he was involved in the development of the BIZMAC, an early computer, and was an engineer, manager and trainer.

    Walter and Gertrude lived in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, raising their children: Thomas (who died in 2001), Alice Halstead of Pittsfield and Celia Halstead, of Somerville. Walter enjoyed skiing with his daughters well into his 70's. He also enjoyed photography, painting, hiking, and travel in the U.S., Europe and South America.

    Walter and Gertrude moved to the Shrewsbury/Worcester area in 1994 to be closer to their daughters. Once in Worcester, he delighted in trips to Tower Hill Botanical Gardens as well as the warm welcome and delicious food of the India Cafe. A teacher in death as in life, he donated his body to medical science and his last assignment will be to educate students at Harvard Medical School.

    He will be greatly missed by his wife, daughters and daughters-in-law Bonnie Walz and Joan Shanti, Cousins, niece Dorothy Lepoff, nephew Roy Halstead, sister-in-law Sonia Halstead and other extended family and friends. Walter will be remembered as a master of arcane trivia, a lover of language, laughter and stimulating conversation and a supporter of liberal and progressive causes. Donations may be made to the University of Massachusetts Memorial Hospice, Tower Hill Botanical Gardens, or the Kerry campaign. A memorial service will be held at a later date. 
    Hebrew Birth 20 Shv 5676 
    Holocaust An interesting part of my father's life is that after he and his parents sailed to New York in `36, they stayed here only a few days, as they
    were only on a visitor's visa.

    In order to obtain an immigration visa, they all had to leave the country, and thus went to Bermuda for 3 days, obtained an immigration visa from the consulate there, (my grandfather apparently had connections in the Bermuda consulate), and then could legally return to the U.S. as immigrants.

    This whole thing was due to the quotas and other American bureaucratic demands of FDR, who as you know, was not very sympathetic to the plight of Jews. 
    Residence 1916-1936  Frankfurt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Immigration 24 Dec 1936  New York, NY, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Residence 1994-2004  Worcester, MA, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Hebrew Death 15 Ab 5764 
    Occupation Engineer: Systems Manager. Consultant 
    Residence Ohio, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Residence Pennsylvania, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Residence New Jersey, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Social Security Number 019-22-1944 
    Died 2 Aug 2004  Worcester, MA, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I1590  Blank Family
    Last Modified 20 Apr 2009 

    Father Julius Halstead(Halberstadt),   b. 9 Sep 1883, Dauernheim Hessen, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Dec 1939, New York, NY, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 56 years) 
    Mother Fridel Grafenberg,   b. 12 Jul 1892, Frankfurt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 Jun 1967, Hallandale, FL, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 74 years) 
    Married 15 Jan 1912  Frankfurt, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F756  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Living 
    Children 
     1. Thomas R. Halstead,   b. 9 Mar 1944, Boston, MA, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 9 Jan 2001, Alhambra, CA, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 56 years)
     2. Living
     3. Living
    Last Modified 16 May 2006 
    Family ID F758  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 25 Jan 1916 - Frankfurt, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1916-1936 - Frankfurt, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsImmigration - 24 Dec 1936 - New York, NY, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1994-2004 - Worcester, MA, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - - Ohio, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - - Pennsylvania, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - - New Jersey, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 2 Aug 2004 - Worcester, MA, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S171] New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957 , Ancestry, Monarch of Bermuda from Hamilton, Bermuda.


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