Walter Ross Berglund Jr. was born 13 Nov 1940 in Aberdeen, Washington. He died 13 Feb 2006 in Bothell, Washington.
Walt graduated from Weatherwax High School (Aberdeen) in 1960; furthered his education at Grays Harbor Community College, receiving his associate’s degree, and continued on to graduate from the University of Washington in 1964 with a bachelor of arts in music. In 1971, he was awarded his masters degree in education (music) from Central Washington University. He worked for the South Bend school district as music director for two years before moving to the Winlock school district where he held the same position. While in Winlock he was greatly involved in orchestrating music festivals and community band concerts. Later he taught elementary and junior high bands in the Lake Washington school district until retirement in 1985.
Despite being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at age 37, he never let it get in the way of enjoying life and doing things that were important to him. He always had a positive attitude and lived life to its fullest. He loved bowling and participated in many bowling leagues.
June of 2005 he and his wife celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary by going bowling with their family. “It was amazing to watch him bowl. Here is this man who can barely keep his balance when he’s NOT holding a 20-lb. ball, but he shuffles up to the scratch line, basically dropping the ball,” says his wife Phyllis. “The ball rolls right along the edge of the gutter the whole way down the lane and then at the last second something about how he dropped it gives it a spin and it hits the pins between #1 and #2, and he gets a strike! It’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen. You’d almost think he doesn’t know he has a disabling disease. I don’t know that he ever received the league trophy for high score, but he always got the award for most inspirational.”
His love of music began at the age of six when he learned to play the accordian. He went on to play tenor sax and was first chair all through high school. During that time, he also played in dance bands. In the 1970s, he served for five years as choir director of the Cottage Lake Presbyterian Church.
After retiring from his teaching position in 1985, Walt taught music privately and also played in the North Seattle Community Band as well as the Woodinville Community Band. His summers were spent with his family–camping, hiking and beachcombing. He especially enjoyed fishing. He attended Bible Study Fellowship for eight years.
Survivors include his wife, Phyllis; three children, Jonathan (Shannon) Berglund, Christina (Jeramy) Leaper, and Timothy (Kari) Berglund; and grandchildren Taylor and Jacob Berglund, Holly, Ashley and Joshua Leaper.
Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, 4 Mar 2006 at the Lake Forest Park Presbyterian Church, 17440 Brookside Blvd. NE, in Seattle. Memorials can be sent to the Woodinville Community Band at 16218 – 216th Avenue NE, Woodinville 98077.
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