Walter Mortensen, 90, resident of Branford, peacefully passed away Feb. 6 after a sudden illness. Walter was born Aug. 18, 1930 to John and Rakel Mortensen in Brooklyn, New York. He was proud to have served his country and enlisted into the Navy and was a Korean War veteran. Upon returning home, he attended New York University where he graduated with honors on the G.I. Bill.
Walter loved his family first and foremost; it was love at first sight and he was married to Martha (Anderson) for 69 years. Together they built a life with travels and friends and raised their family with roots in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, then moving to Smoke Rise, New Jersey for 25 years then Castle Rock, Colorado where they lived for another 25 years, enjoying the lifestyle that the Rocky Mountains afforded them. Walter and Martha would often be found skiing on the cross country trails. Always up for an adventure, at age 85 they drove themselves East and settled on the Connecticut shoreline in Branford where they have resided for the past five years.
Walter was a self-made man who always thought of others and what he could do for them. He built his business, the Institute of Philanthropic Planning, and would work with university endowment programs throughout the country and many Boys & Girls Clubs; always connecting those who had with those who needed. He was generous to a fault and would always have a joke or a riddle at the ready. Walter loved a good party and was typically the life of the party. He was tremendously proud of all his children and grandchildren and made sure they all knew it.
Walter is survived by his wife Martha; son Mark (Laurel), grandson Erik (Keely), great-grandson Lars, granddaughter Hanna (Daniel), and great-grandson Kallan; son Paul (Diane) and granddaughter Jennifer of Denver, Colorado; and daughter Susan (John Knapp) and grandchildren, Madison, Michael, and David of Guilford.
A celebration of life will take place later this year. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to or volunteering with your favorite charity and sharing a joke with a stranger.