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Walter (Wally) Charles Koepke

Obituary for Walter (Wally) Charles Koepke

November 10, 1918 - August 29, 2020
Dallas, Georgia | Age 101

Loving Dad, Grandpa, & Great-Grandpa


Walter (Wally) Charles Koepke, born November 10, 1918, long-time resident of McHenry and Spring Grove and recently of Dallas, Georgia, went to be with his Lord on August 29, 2020 at 101 years of age.

Wally was born to Herman and Anna (nee Gode) in Chicago. He graduated from the American College of Physical Education in Chicago in 1939 where he was the quarterback of the football team. He completed his education at the University of Illinois in 1940. During summers he was a lifeguard at Oak Street Beach in Chicago where his silhouette was used on the cover of the lifeguard manual for the Chicago Park District for several decades. On August 23, 1941 he married his sweetheart, Sue (Schirmang) whom he met while working at a summer camp in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. He worked as a physical education instructor at the Naval R.O.T.C. at the University of Minnesota before enlisting in the Navy. He served in WWII in the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign and was captain of an LCT ship that participated in the invasion of Okinawa. He was honorably discharged as a Lieutenant Junior Grade.

In 1957, Wally and Sue moved their family to McHenry from Chicago and in 1970 they moved to Spring Grove. Wally was a member of Zion Lutheran Church in McHenry for 60 years where he served as a trustee and an elder. He belonged to the Golden Kiwanis for 30 years, served as secretary and helped in the fight against cystic fibrosis. He also participated in the Kiwanis Peanut Day which raised funds for children in the community. He also served the area by driving people to cancer treatments. Donating blood was one of Wally's passions—he donated gallons of blood over the years. Wally also served on the Board of Directors at Hoyne Savings & Loan for 22 years.

Wally was a long-time fan of all the Chicago teams and the Illini and lived to see the Cubs win the World Series!

He is survived by his four children: Jim Koepke of Littleton, CO, Dr. Jerry and Mary Lynne Koepke of Littleton, CO, Suzanne (Koepke) Jones of Lexington, SC, and Hank and Karyl (Koepke) Fellows of Dallas, GA.

He loved spending time with his grandchildren: Phil Koepke, Melissa Koepke, Jim Fellows, David Koepke, Katie Koepke, Kristen Halstead, and Katie Paolozzi. And he adored his great grandchildren: Paeten and Blake Halstead, Ava and Wyatt Koepke, Ethan Paolozzi, Ally and Kevin Fellows.

He was preceded in death by his wife (deceased in 1982), brother Herman and sister Ruth Hamstra.

A graveside service will be held at Woodland Cemetery in McHenry on September 19th at 11:00 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, a donation in Wally's name may be made to your favorite charity.

Colonial Funeral Home is assisting the Koepke Family. Any questions, please visit or call 815-385-0063.

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  • Charity of your choice in Wally's Name

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Colonial Funeral Home & Crematory

591 Ridgeview Drive
McHenry, IL 60050
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