Walter J. Mikas Jr., a devoted husband, father, friend and grampy, passed away peacefully at the home of his daughter Sunday evening, May 10, 2020, with his family at his side.
He was born in Worcester on February 6, 1942, son of the late Walter and Mary (Gaidanowicz) Mikas but lived in Gardner for most of his 78 years.
Walter had a love for the outdoors that started when he was young picking blueberries and pruning apple trees on his Uncle’s farm, and playing with his best friend “Billy” the goat. As he got older one of his favorite places was being in the woods where he enjoyed hunting deer, running his beagles for rabbits, fishing and ice fishing or just sitting and enjoying the beautiful scenery and sounds of nature. At home he had a green thumb with flowers and vegetables and he would use his binoculars to admire all of his bird friends he provided food for. Walter also loved listening to classic country music on Willie’s Roadhouse, watching Big Joe’s Polka Show and taking chances on scratch tickets. His greatest enjoyment was spending time with his family including going to his grandson’s sporting events.
Walter proudly served his country as a member of the Coast Guard from 1959 to 1963, stationed in San Salvador, Bahamas. He had worked at Simplex and later Travers Welding, where he was assistant foreman in the press room until his retirement.
Walter was a member of the American Legion Post 129, Ridgely Country Club and CMPL Pool League. He attended the former Mission Street Congregational Church, now Mission of Grace Church.
Walter is survived by many friends and family including his beloved wife of 56 years, Helen (Augustino) Mikas; a daughter, Mary Burpee and her husband Brian of Gardner; a sister and brother-in-law Patricia and Charles Woodard of Hubbardston; and two grandchildren, Bailey and Brady Burpee along with many nephews and nieces and his furry daughter Lila. He was preceded in death by his son, John Mikas and his brother Michael Mikas.
The family would like to express their warmest thanks to his sister-in-law and brother-in-law Eleanor and Claude Bourgeois and his friends Walter Handy and Wayne Salame who visited and supported Grampy almost daily, and to Fred Swedberg who cheered him up almost weekly during his courageous battle with Cancer.
Funeral services will be held in Stone-Ladeau Funeral Home, 343 Central Street, Winchendon at a later date and burial will be in St. Josephs Cemetery.
Memorial donations may be made to Mission of Grace Church, 358 Pleasant Street, Gardner, Ma 01440.
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