Walter Huser, born in Wettingen, Switzerland on June 5, 1928, passed away peacefully on January 28, 2014, surrounded by his loving family, after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Walter is survived by Agnes, his wife of 57 years, his children and grandchildren Peter and Monika, Angela (Garrett), Sonya; Irene and Mark, Lauren (Johnny), Alyx; and Robert and Elaine, Kara and Christian; his twin sisters Maria and Martha and many nieces and nephews in Switzerland.
Walter immigrated to Canada in the spring of 1953 with his good friend, Beni, landing in Montreal. The two friends worked their way across Canada towards Vancouver. After being down to his last few dollars, Walter finally found a job in construction. His first contract took him to Tahsis BC, where he worked on the mill. As a devoted Catholic he volunteered his time to help build the local church. Walter quickly fell in love with the rugged west coast and moved to Ucluelet, where he raised his family, started his own construction business and made many lifelong friends.
Walter was an avid outdoors man and an excellent mountaineer. He conquered the famous Matterhorn four times, but also explored the west coast mountains with his good friend, Fred and, later on, with his own children. In 1972, Walter took his family back to Switzerland for five memorable years. The lure of the west coast called them back, one by one, and they eventually settled on Salt Spring Island in 1977. Walter then started his new construction business. Joined by his sons, his company built many fine homes on the island.
His retirement years were spent traveling all over North America with Agnes in their motor home, living a simple life in their cottage, enjoying and spending time with his six wonderful grandchildren, going for walks with his dogs, stacking the perfect woodpile, tending to his flourishing garden which he took tremendous pride in, and providing the neighborhood with his famous salad greens.
He reminisced about the many highlights of his life up until the end: his trips to the Arctic Circle with his brother Richard, the frequent visits and calls from his nephew Markus (and Marianne), fishing trips with his boys, weekends away at Mark and Irene’s family cabin at Cameron Lake and, most of all, the incredible love and support from his family and his long, happy marriage to Agnes.
Special thanks to Dr. Ron Reznick, the entire nursing staff at Lady Minto Hospital, the Home Care Nursing staff, Billy, Alan, Rita and to the many friends who came to visit offering their love and support. There will be no memorial at Walter’s request. Those who knew him will remember Walter as a kind and gentle soul with big hands and an even bigger heart.