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309 W. Parkdale Avenue
Manistee, MI 49660
Phone: (231) 723-1117
Fax: (231) 723-1029
Walter Heinichen

Walter Paul "Wally" Heinichen

Thursday, November 25th, 1937 - Thursday, July 16th, 2020
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Walter Paul Heinichen "Wally" aged 82 of Onekama, Michigan and Chicago, Illinois died on July 16, 2020 at Medilodge of Traverse City as a result of dementia. He was the son of the late Walter Hans Heinichen and Rosalie Marie Diefurt. He served in the United States Coast Guard and loved to tell stories about his time in service, which included using fire extinguishers to cool beer. He was married to Lorraine Heinichen for 36 years. He always liked to say that some men never found one good wife, but that he found two. He and Jean Marie Capper were married on July 27, 2002.

Wally's biggest passion was sailing. He was a baby the first time his parents took him out on Lake Michigan and he made his first Chicago to Mackinac race at the age of 12, before there was a Mackinac Island Bridge. He subsequently sailed 57 more races, the last several on the yacht Hornet which he and Jean acquired in 2009. He was both an Old Goat (25 Macs) and a Master Mariner (50 macs). He never quite forgave Jean for quitting racing before he got to 60 and she got her 25. He also passed on that passion to many young people with his involvement with the Sea Scouts. Wally was born and raised in Chicago, but became a Michigander a year ago.

He leaves behind his loving wife, Jean Capper; 3 Children, Teri Owens RN (Tim ”KC” Wilkerson), Chip Heinichen CPD(Jane), and Kristin Heinichen (Peter Davidson); 3 step children, Elizabeth, Philip and Michael Igoe; 5 grandchildren, Lindsey Owens RN, Teaghan Owens, Christopher Heinichen, Peter Davidson and Ava Davidson. He also leaves behind his beloved dog, Buddy.

The family will hold a zoom memorial and hope to have an in person memorial service next summer. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to a charity of your choice, or one of Wally’s; ChicagoMaritime Museum 1200 W. 35th Chicago, IL 60609; Greater Chicago Food Depository 4100 W. Ann Lurie Place Chicago, IL 60632; Felines and Canines 6379 N. Paulina Chicago, IL 60660

Please share a memory with the family at Arrangements by the Oak Grove Funeral Home & Cremation Center in Manistee.
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Deirdre Martin

Posted at 06:37pm
Wally was someone that I always looked forward to seeing at the club and hearing about his latest adventure. Not one time could I ever get past Wally without a hug and a hello! I always knew it wasn't going to be a quick chat but the stories he would tell just made my day. Being the only two Morgan boat owners in the harbor, we'd compare differences, especially when I set foot on his boat for the first time and was jealous of the literal 'engine room'. Just when I managed to get over that, I sat in the bathtub! I never wanted another boat until I was introduced to Hornet.
I have nothing but fond memories of Wally's smile and his love of life and sailing. He was always able to offer suggestions having to do with anything boats. I have missed him even before now but I will always treasure his humor and willingness to share his experiences with anyone who wanted to listen.

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