Walter Henry Reuter III, 87, of Sewickley, passed away suddenly Friday, Dec. 24, 2021, with his loving wife of 45 years, Susie, by his side. Walt was born in Harrisburg, Pa., to Walter H. Reuter II and Roberta (Speller) Reuter, and raised in Tyler, Texas. He graduated from the University of Houston with a degree in architecture. After graduation, Walt followed in his father’s military footsteps and enlisted in the Air Force, serving in Vietnam, and ultimately attaining the rank of captain. Walt last saw his father when he was 10 years old. His father and three other men were reported missing in action on Oct. 14, 1944, after an intense battle at Raffelsbrand crossing, about five miles southeast of Aachen, Germany. Miraculously, Walt’s father’s dog tags were found 60 years later in the area where he went missing and were returned to Walt on May 18, 2010, which brought Walt a long-overdue sense of peace and closure. After completing his military service, Walt moved to Pittsburgh, which was his father’s hometown, to take a job at a reputable architecture firm. During his more than 60-year career, Walt worked at several firms in the area, including Tasso Katselas, Williams, Tribilcock and Whitehead and Michael Molnar, before working independently until his passing. Walt was an accomplished architect and drew inspiration from many of the greats, including Hugh Newell Jacobsen and Benno Janssen, but he was particularly influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright. He was such a scholar of Wright’s, studying the architect’s Falling Water project so intently that he knew more about the house and the architect than the tour guides at the famous tourist attraction. Walt maintained his pilot’s license for many years after his military service, regularly flying short trips to neighboring states. Over the years, he traveled across the country as a spectator of some of the largest air shows, with his favorite being the annual air show and gathering of aviation enthusiasts in Oshkosh, Wis. During these trips, Walt often sought out the local Frank Lloyd Wright projects and made it a point to visit, combining his loves of flying, architecture and travel. Walt and Susie met in Pittsburgh and married on July 18, 1976, at Chautauqua Lake in Southern New York. Walt was a thoughtful and loving husband and a committed stepfather to Tracey, Paige and Jimmy. He loved spending his summers patiently teaching the kids how to sail and the winters how to ski. Walt’s love for flying was rivaled only by his passion for sailing. Walt spent nearly every summer of his life sailing his C-scow on Lake Chautauqua, only recently retiring from the sport a few years ago. He was the commodore of the Chautauqua Yacht Club and was known as an extremely competitive and legendary sailor. He enjoyed sharing his enthusiasm for sailing with his stepchildren and grandchildren. While in Chautauqua, Walt also enjoyed spending the evenings at the Amphitheater listening to live music, particularly performances by the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra. Walt loved to play golf, ski, swim, spend time with his family and friends, and sing, often breaking out in a verse when the moment moved him. He never missed watching a Pittsburgh Steelers game, and frequently traveled to Latrobe in the summer to attend the team’s training camp. Walt’s bright smile and kind heart touched many over the years, but he had a special spot for his beloved pets, especially the family’s cocker spaniel, Lucky, and Simon, his loyal cat, with whom he had a special bond. Walt was preceded in death by his father, mother and sister, Robin Stanier. Just hours after Walt’s passing, his niece, Betsy Longoria, unexpectedly passed away. Walt is survived by his wife, Susie; his brother, David Reuter Sr. (Janie); stepchildren, Tracey Rock, Paige Fishel (Dave) and Jimmy Rock (Jessica); nieces, Cynthia Webb, Cris Longoria and Casey Leach (Charles); nephew, David Reuter Jr. (Charmaine); and grandchildren, Elizabeth Rock, Jonah Fishel (Sarah), Elijah Fishel and Tristan Fishel, Rachel Rock and Noah Rock. Walt would have welcomed his first great-grandchild in April 2022. A celebration of Walt’s life will be held in Sewickley in early February.
Published by Triblive Online Only on Dec. 31, 2021.