Walter W. Mathwig
Tuesday, February 14, 2017 8:28 AM
Walter Mathwig, 97, of Arlington passed away Monday, February 13, 2017 at the Arlington Good Samaritan Society.
Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Thursday, February 16 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Green Isle. Visitation will be 4–8 p.m. Wednesday and one hour prior to service time Thursday all at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Interment with military honors will be in the Arlington Public Cemetery. Kolden Funeral Home of Arlington is handling the arrangements.
Walter Wesley Mathwig was born November 6, 1919 in Green Isle Township, Sibley County to Arthur and Minnie (Sickmann) Mathwig. He was baptized on November 16, 1919 and confirmed on March 25, 1934 at Zion Lutheran Church, Green Isle Township. He attended rural schools.
The years following Walter’s formal education were during the Great Depression. Jobs were scarce. Walter was not one to be still for long and found several different ways to earn money. He raised and sold Newfoundland dogs and told stories about the puppy he received via mail. He also trapped and sold the furs and hired out to other farmers. Walter joined the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corp) and for six months worked in northern Minnesota making trails and clearing land.
On November 20, 1943 he married Eileen Niehaus in St. Louis, Missouri, which was near Jefferson Barracks, Missouri, where Walter was stationed. They had shared 73 years of married life together at the time of his death. He served his country in the U.S. Army Air Corps between April 1942 and December 1945 and was deployed to the Pacific theater off the Palua Islands and surrounding area. Walter began a tradition in the Mathwig military family – spending time on Okinawa. Sons Wayne, Don, Wes and Marv and granddaughter, Amber, all spent time on Okinawa during deployments to the Pacific theater. Walter was a member of the Arlington VFW and the Green Isle American Legion.
On returning to Minnesota he and his wife farmed in Jessenland Township and continued to live there for 69 years. Walter attended Ag School in Green Isle twice a week following harvest until spring planting for four years. The educational program was sponsored by the University of Minnesota. Walter had a knack for remembering the equipment he bought over the years and what he paid for the equipment. He continued his love of farming after retirement by receiving farm magazines, driving around “checking out the crops” and reminiscing about farm life.
His large family was another proud accomplishment for Walter. In recent years he always had big smiles whenever holding his many great and great-great-grandchilden.
He is survived by his wife Eileen Mathwig of Arlington; children, Joyce (David) Kroells, Wayne Mathwig, Jackie (Darrel) Alsleben, Donald (Pat) Mathwig, Wesley Mathwig, Marvin Mathwig, Bill (Carla) Mathwig, Beverly Breyer; and daughter-in-law, Nancy Mathwig; 26 grandchildren, Scott Janssen, Kris Oien, Ken, Kraig and Karin Kroells, Lisa Mathwig, Linda Jeurissen, Lainey Schwartz, Stacy Haggenmiller, Nick Alsleben, Lisa Lewis, Jarrett Mathwig, Julie Bailey, Heather Hover, Briana Kloppen, Jennifer Shufelt, Zachary, Nathan, Derek, Sean, Amber and Jeremy Mathwig, Jessica Olson, Tonia Bindas, Troy and Matthew Breyer; 50 great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; siblings, Gilbert (Gladys) Mathwig and Chester Mathwig; and many nieces and nephews.
Walter is preceded in death by his parents; son, Darwin; daughters-in-law, Mary Mathwig and Debbie Mathwig; siblings, Lawrence Mathwig, Ordwin Mathwig, Ernst (Dorothy) Mathwig and Manley (Elvera) Mathwig; sister-in-law, Betty Mathwig; and sister, Elsie Sturm.