Walter Robert Aho passed away on Thursday, May 27, 2021.
Walter was born on September 26, 1937, in Fitchburg, MA to Reino and Fannie Aho, joining siblings Eleanor, Charles and Bernard.
Walter’s childhood years were difficult. Before he turned one, his mother passed away, leaving him, initially, in the care of his 10-year-old sister, Eleanor. As a very young child, Walter would spend days home alone. This experience taught him to be adaptable, resourceful, and independent. While his father was away training troops at Fort Devens, Walter was cared for by various families. He always traced his love of God and the Bible to the times he lived with Semmi and Annie Frigard on their poultry farm in Ashby, MA.
Walter joined the Air Force at age 18 and served as a radar technician for 3 years in Germany. For the next ten years, he worked for Seppala & Aho Construction (S&A) of New Ipswich, NH, eventually becoming vice president. Relying on his adaptability and resourcefulness, he spent the next two decades in a variety of occupations including well driller, tool auctioneer, store owner, and used car dealer and mechanic. In 1987, Walter launched the Grace Electric Division of S&A, which he eventually bought and managed until he retired in 2005.
Walter married the love of his life, Karen Somero, in 1964. They were blessed with 14 children. In response to his own childhood, Walter’s greatest expression of love for his wife and children was providing them a secure home.
Walter was a gifted man. He had a brilliant mind and memory. He generously applied his abilities to meet life’s challenges, from broken appliances and bodily ailments to pest control. But what set Walter apart was his values. He refused to strive for anything temporal, instead he invested in eternity. For Walter, life was about loving God and loving people.
Walter planted and tended gardens and berry fields. Each year, he found joy in freely giving away the fruit of his labor.
Walter was a master with words. Whether he was telling stories to children, tossing quips at teens, or sharing poetry and songs with a crowd, he delighted in sharing his wit and wisdom with others.
Walter felt a special bond to anyone who was lonely or hurting. He visited and ministered to these friends to the very end of his life.
Above all, Walter’s greatest passion was sharing the truth and love of the Bible. Walter served as a preacher and minister in his community. However, his message was not reserved for the pulpit; wherever he went, Walter delighted in sharing his faith.
Walter’s example cultivated a love of the Truth and a desire to serve in his family. Walter and Karen’s children and grandchildren have ministered throughout America and the world as pastors, teachers, prophets and healers, sharing the same love and compassion shown at home.
Walter’s greatest desire from this labor was that God’s love and care for all people might be known. If you were ever blessed by what was shared from Walter’s hands or heart, you will honor his life’s work by sharing what you received with others. In so doing, the care that was given this creative, hard-working, oft-homeless boy from Fitchburg, MA will perpetually bear good fruit to God’s eternal Glory.
He was preceded in death his parents, his brothers Charlie and Bernard, his wife Karen, and his daughter Jill.
He is survived by his sister Eleanor Marceau of Rindge, NH and half-sister Elizabeth Graham of Niles, MI. Also, his children: Jody (and Bob) Ojala of New Ipswich, NH; Seth (and Marlene) Aho of Hockinson, WA; Molly (and Scott) Karlsen of Battle Ground, WA; Connie Christopher of Battle Ground, WA; Gabriel (and Dorothy) Aho of Beaufort, SC; Clara Aho of Peterborough, NH; Isaac (and Deby) Aho of Campobello, SC; Jed (and Melodie) Aho of Campobello, SC; Dan (and Amber) of Campobello, SC; Emanuel (and Melanie) Aho of Battle Ground, WA; Tasha (and Travis) Johnson of Abilene, TX; Tandy (and Ronnie) Seppala of Managua, Nicaragua and Lisbeth (and Joel) Wastlund of Gardner, KS; 59 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren.
The following service has been planned for Wednesday, June 2,2021, at the Ashburnham Apostolic Lutheran Church, 315 Winchendon Rd, Ashburnham, MA 01430
Calling hours from 9:30 - 11:00 a.m.
Funeral from 11:00 - 12:00 p.m. Livestream: https://www.ashburnhamalc.com/
Lunch from 12:00- 2:00 p.m.
A Graveside Service with Military Honors will follow at 2:30 p.m. at Smithville Cemetery, on Binney Hill Road in New Ipswich, NH.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Ronnie and Tandy Seppala for their ministry in Nicaragua via paypal: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn about Ronnie and Tandy’s ministry, visit Hope Fellowship’s website at www.hfcnh.com.