Walter Vincent Barto, 91, of Locust, died Wednesday, April 27 at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, peacefully in the presence of his loving family .
Born in Brooklyn, New York, and raised in Perth Amboy, the son of Walter Vincent and Helen Barto, (nee Jankiewicz), he grew up with his sisters, Veronica and Florence and brother Richard.
Walter graduated from Perth Amboy High School in 1941 at 17 and immediately volunteered to serve in United States Navy. He worked as a radio operator on the USS Cowpens, an aircraft carrier in World War II. The USS Cowpens had the unique distinction of being the most decorated ship in the war, with a Battle Star for every battle after Midway and for being the first aircraft carrier to enter Tokyo Harbor for the surrender. Walter was very proud of his service and had many great stories to share.
After the war he bought a farm in upstate New York for his parents and siblings. He also studied business at NYU. His business acumen and charm led him to a successful sales career for many years.
After leaving sales, Walter enjoyed a second career as director of security at Riverview
Medical Center in Red Bank, a job he loved until retiring in 1993. Many changes he made at Riverview are still in place today.
Walter was a resident of Middletown for 60 years: a self-described homebody, his family, house and yard were “heaven on earth.” He truly appreciated nature and its miracles. When his children were younger he took them camping or visiting family in other states. With Kathleen, he enjoyed many fabulous trips. Their Baltic Cruise and drive up to Big Sur were two favorites.
Walter liked creative activities like woodworking, repairing projects and waxing philosophical. He also enjoyed history, Jeopardy and western movies. Walter was an avid reader, a joy still shared by all of the family.
Walter is survived by his beloved wife of 61 years, Kathleen (Sullivan) Barto; his five children, Amy Lynn Monahan (Peter), Helen Elizabeth ‘Betsy’ Denhart, Walter Christopher Barto (Kim), Mary-Michele Morrall (Kevin) and Kimberly Anne Smith (Paul), his seven grandchildren, Beth, Pamela, Alison, Samantha, Daniel, Harrison and Paul; and his three great-grandchildren, Hannah, Genevieve and Lily.
Kathleen and their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were the lights of his life and brought him joy up to his very last smile.
The family will receive visitors on from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, May 5 at John Pfleger Funeral Home, Middletown.
Funeral Services will begin at 11 a.m. on Friday, May 6 at All Saints Memorial Church (The Stone Church), Navesink.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Walter’s name to the All Saints’ Memorial Church, PO Box 326, Navesink, NJ 07752.
For more information, to send condolences or for directions, please visit www.pflegerfh.com.
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