Walter D. Fenyk, 90
He loved Harlingen
(September 6, 1930 – July 13, 2021)
Walter Donald Fenyk, Sr. of Harlingen, died on July 13 at the age of 90. After several months of declining health, Walt died peacefully shortly after a long visit from his beloved wife, Rita.
Walter was born in Harlingen – a small enclave within Montgomery Township – where he spent his entire life, living across a field from where he was born and grew up.
His parents, Michael and Sophia Fenyk, had emigrated from Ukraine two decades prior. The youngest of three children, Walter had an idyllic childhood on a small farm. As a child, and throughout his life, he had a great love for this location.
In the 1948 Princeton High School yearbook, as a graduating senior, it is noted with his photograph that he was "known for his pride in Harlingen — where he would spend most of his life."
Walter attended the University of Alabama. Afterward, he enrolled in active duty in the Korean War, achieving the rank of sergeant.
After serving in the war, Walter returned to Montgomery and worked at Skillman Village as a patrolman, during which he met his future wife, Rita, to whom he remained married to for 66 years.
Wanting to settle next door to his beloved parents, in 1963 Walter had a house built across a field that was part of the original Fenyk farm. This is where he lived for the rest of his life, raising two sons while watching over his mother for many years.
Close by, and in Harlingen, Walter became the founder, principle owner, and broker of record of Dutchtown Realty, whose offices were located in the historic schoolhouse that is now occupied by Montgomery Medical Associates.
As a successful business, Dutchtown Realty focused mostly on sales of large parcels of farmland to developers, and at its peak, employed roughly 15 real estate agents. During this time, Walter was active in Montgomery Township governance serving on the school board and later, the Montgomery Zoning Board of Adjustment in a leadership position.
Eventually, Walter left real estate sales and entered the field of real estate appraising, working for the State of New Jersey becoming the senior appraiser for the New Jersey Bureau of Tidelands, where he spent the rest of his professional life until he retired and worked part-time as an appraiser for the FHA.
During retirement, Walter enjoyed extensive overseas travel with his wife, friends, and family. What Walter loved most was the upkeep of his property, which was noted by many as having one of the most attractively manicured yards in the general area. Walter, Rita and his two boys all contributed to the upkeep at their Harlingen Road home and were fully aware that what they had — and enjoyed — was special.
Walter was dedicated and loyal to his beloved wife and two sons. He loved providing his family with the best of everything. He showed great pride and unwavering love for his family.
Staying true to his roots, for years in retirement he would relax in his favorite chair out on his beautiful porch, usually smoking a pipe while surveying the view of the property and farmland he loved so much.
Walter Fenyk is survived by his cherished wife, Rita; sons Walter Donald Fenyk II and Robert Michael Fenyk; grandchildren Chelsey and Caitlyn; and daughter-in-law Cassandra Fenyk.
A Mass of Christian Burial for Walter Fenyk is planned for Thursday, July 29 at 11 am at Saint Charles Borromeo Roman Catholic Church in Montgomery. ■