Walter Reno Alderson, the son of Teckla Reno Lohof and Thomas D. Alderson, arrived in this world six weeks early on the morning of December 8, 1996 in Billings, Montana. He spent the first month of his life in the NICU of St. Vincent’s Hospital. After a month of laying around, he joined his older siblings, Grace and Tommy Alderson, and Kirk and Rachel Lohof at home, near Sheridan, Wyoming. Walter made up for his early arrival and the accompanying delays, when he finally developed what was to become a lifelong interest in food. He soon grew into a pudgy, happy baby who brought joy to everyone he met.
As a toddler, Walter and his maternal grandfather, Junior Reno developed a special bond on the family ranch in Wright, Wyoming. They spent many hours driving around together, checking oil and water wells, while listening to Rush “Limbob” on the radio.
Walter’s keen sense of humor developed at an early age. He particularly enjoyed playing jokes and teasing his brothers and sisters (and later in life his brothers and sister-in-law). His other childhood hobbies included video games and playing with matches. After several small fire incidents, Walter was dubbed a pyromaniac. Walter misheard the new title and was forever after a “Pirate Maniac.” He began grade school and learned to snowboard while living in Bozeman, Montana with his mother. Teckla and Walter were expert road trippers and had many adventures all over the West in their short time together.
Walter was an avid reader and could often be found with a book in his hand. He had a particular interest in the U.S. History and the Civil War. His family encouraged his interests; Walter was able to tour Gettysburg with his maternal grandmother Eda Reno in 2008.
Walter first became an uncle in 2004, a role he was very good at, despite his initial lack of interest in babies. He leaves a large absence (and an abiding love of fireworks) in the lives of his nieces and nephews. He had a special affinity for animals, particularly kittens, otters, and Norwegian Fjords. His warm, engaging personality made the people around him feel appreciated, wherever he was. Walter was always ready with a smile or a hug for his friends and family. Walter valued his many friendships and invested quality time in each of them.
In the Sheridan area, Walter spent many summers in the Big Horn Mountains on pack trip adventures with the Alderson and Gibson families. The Big Horns held a special place in his heart.
While attending Sheridan High School, Walter and his buddies founded a calf wrestling business, Almost Professionals Inc. Walter’s size and strength was an asset to the business, they kept themselves busy during many branding seasons before the end of their high school careers.
To escape his brothers and the workload they had lined up for him on the family ranches, Walter enlisted in the United States Army following his graduation from Sheridan High School in 2015. He completed basic training in Fort Benning, Georgia and “Turned Blue” on November 11, 2015. He was a noted marksman, a skill he honed shooting prairie dogs as a boy. As a member of the US Army Infantry, he was based at Fort Polk, Lousiana. He served one tour in Syria (more info?)
Walter valued the camaraderie and the bonds he formed in the Army Infantry. The brothers he gained in the 10th Mountain Division, will forever be considered family.
Walter was preceded in death by his mother, Teckla Reno Lohof, his grandfathers Bill Alderson and Floyd C. Reno, Jr., grandmother Ruth Ferguson Alderson, and uncle William Alderson. He is survived by his father Thomas D. (Jessie Huffman) Alderson, grandmother Eda J. Reno, siblings Rachel Lohof (Guy Larsen), Grace (Cole) Germann, Kirk (Ashley) Lohof, Thomas D. Alderson, Jr., his nieces and nephews, Briana Cunningham and her son, Kallias Loera, Conley Larsen, TJ Germann, Amy Ruth Germann, special friends, the Gibson Family, Shawn, Wanda, Jaelynn, and Lane, his extended family, Renos, Fergusons, Underwoods and a many friends, also his brothers in the 10th Mountain Division.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in Walter’s name be made to (I’ve contacted Survivor Outreach Services for more information on Military Suicide Prevention organizations).
Online condolences may be written at www.kanefuneral.com.
Kane Funeral Home has been entrusted with local arrangements.