Walter S. McKelvey (1941 – 2016)

Walter S. “Buck” McKelvey, 75, of Montpelier passed away after a brief illness on Thursday, December 1st at Defiance Area Inpatient Hospice Center. He was born in Bridgewater Township on October 27, 1941 to Eva (Hug) and Eldon Lavon McKelvey.

He was a 1959 graduate of Montpelier High School and a veteran of the United States Army. On September 2, 1983, he married Delphia “Stella” Combs and she survives. He was a farmer, then a mechanic, dispatcher and a semi-truck driver for Bryan Truck Lines.

Buck’s personality was a unique blend of warmth, toughness, humor and integrity. His family and friends remember him as the stabilizing force that could be depended on for gentle common sense advice, help with home improvement projects and proud support of his grandkids’ extra-curricular activities. He was well-read and knowledgeable about all aspects of the American Civil War, World War II and the Old West. Spending time outdoors, watching college football and auto racing were favorite pastimes. He deeply appreciated a hearty meal and a hot cup of coffee while enjoying it with his family and friends. He admired the beauty and power of nature and preferred being outside.

Buck’s parents preceded him in death. He is survived by his wife of thirty-three years, Delphia; one sister Faye (Herb) Retcher of Ney; three daughters, Angie (Terry) Manuszak of Dayton, Cheri (Dennis) Lemmon of Edon, and Heather (Todd) Hammermeister of Alpena, Michigan; nine grandchildren, T.J. Hammermeister, Chad Hammermeister, Jordan Stoy, Ellie (Lemmon) Nussbaum, Levi and Sarah Lemmon, and Samuel, Tessa and Cara Manuszak. In 2016, Buck welcomed one great grandson to the family. Several nieces and nephews enjoyed special relationships with him. Buck is also survived by his aunt Rachel (Shankster) McKelvey.

A Celebration of Life will take place on Saturday, December 17, 2016 at 12:00 p.m. at the Montpelier Eagles.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to CHP – Hospice, the American Heart Association, or the American Cancer Society. Online condolences may be left at

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