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F. Walter Levy

December 17, 1925 ~ December 25, 2023 (age 98) 98 Years Old

F. Walter Levy Obituary

F. Walter Levy, age 98, born on December 17, 1925, in East St. Louis, IL, died on Monday, December 25, 2023, at St. Paul’s Home, Belleville, IL.

Walter “PaPa” Levy served in the U.S. Navy, where he studied to be a pilot at Ohio Wesleyan College and proudly took up boxing.  After his honorable discharge at the end of WWII, he spent his early career working for his father at Ralph Levy & Sons Painting in East St. Louis, a business Walter later owned and operated with his wife Melva “NaNa” Levy.  After PaPa’s retirement, he volunteered painting and remodeling houses in Belleville for underprivileged families and military veterans. Throughout many decades of his life, he maintained his property, “the farm,” on Levy Lane in Millstadt.  At the farm, NaNa and PaPa fished, grew gardens, planted over 100 trees, famously raised burros, took excellent care of Bunnyland, and hosted numerous family barbecues and reunions.  PaPa still holds the record for softball games pitched on the farm’s softball field.  Over his life span, PaPa attended many Catholic churches in East St. Louis and surrounding areas.  He went to Mass regularly and always sang in church.  PaPa “got a kick” out of telling jokes; he enjoyed Cardinal baseball, fishing, playing cards, going to dances, and just sitting around a kitchen table enjoying a home cooked meal while “shooting the breeze,” laughing and kidding around with family and friends.  When family events were out-of-town, PaPa was eager to go.  With family, he traveled as far as Montana, Mexico, New Orleans, South Carolina, Kentucky, Kansas, and other destinations. In recent years, although being restricted by surgeries and illnesses, PaPa continued to be an enthusiastic presence at family gatherings and activities, always maintaining his quick wit and positive attitude. He will be incredibly missed by his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren; lifelong family friend, Bessie Haynes; extended family members; and all the friends made at St Paul’s Senior Community.  PaPa was a generous and happy man.  He will be remembered for his big smile, his good humor, and his warm handshake.  We picture him now humming a happy tune and dancing with NaNa.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Melva M. Levy, nee Fredrick; his son, Jack Levy; his grandson, Benjamin Levy; his parents, Ralph and Ada Levy, nee DeMond; his sister, Mary Nell; and his brothers, Ralph Levy, Jr., and Joe Levy.

Walter is survived by his children, Frans (Barbara) Levy, Mark (Elizabeth) Levy, Alice Marie (Jeff) McSorley, and Ruth Ann (Roger) Garrison; his daughter in law, Jane Levy; 15 grandchildren; 22 great grandchildren and 1 on the way.

Memorials may be made to Shriner’s Hospital or to St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Memorial Mass will be held on Saturday, January 13, 2024, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Belleville, IL, with Fr. Bill McGhee and Fr. Jim Voelker officiating. 

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Memorial Mass
January 13, 2024

10:30 AM
St. Mary's Catholic Church
1706 W. Main St.
Belleville, IL 62226


Shriner's Hospital for Children

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
501 St. Jude Place, Memphis TN 38105
Tel: 1-800-805-5856


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