In Memoriam: Walter Shymansky

31 March 2019 • In Memoriam

With faith in Christ and hope in the resurrection, we share news of the repose of Seminary Alumnus and noted Church musician Walter Shymansky, who fell asleep in the Lord on Sunday, March 31, 2019.

Born on July 29, 1928, the son of Archpriest Walter (later Bishop Peter) and Matushka Emily Shymansky, he enlisted in the United States Air Force after graduating from Olyphant, PA High School in 1946.  He served as a control tower operator in the Pacific, primarily in Guam.  After his honorable discharge, he received a Bachelor of Science degree from Stroudsburg, PA State Teachers College.  He also earned a Master’s degree in School Administration and Guidance from Pennsylvania State University.  A gifted instructor, he taught biology in New Jersey schools, including a 26-year tenure at Teaneck High School.

He and his beloved wife Mary, who fell asleep in the Lord May 31, 2017, were married in August 1966.

Walter attended Saint Vladimir’s Seminary, where he pursued evening classes in music and conducting, after which he served various parishes in northern New Jersey and southern New York.  He also was a member of the Capella Russian Male Chorus for 29 years and served as its conductor for a decade. Upon retirement, he and his wife relocated to Cohoes, NY, where he was asked by local clergy to organize the Saint Andrew’s Brotherhood Choir.  In addition to serving Saint Nicholas Church, Cohoes, NY, he also directed the choir at Saint Nicholas Church, Pittsfield, MA and taught at Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, South Canaan, PA.  He maintained an extensive repertoire of liturgical music, much of which is available on the Podoben website. In September 2014, he was awarded the Orthodox Church in America’s Order of Saint Romanos.

Walter is survived by his younger brother, Russell; nieces Arlene DeWitt and Donna Moyer; and nephews William and Gary Rusen.

Visitation will begin at Saint Nicholas Church, 67 Saratoga Street, Cohoes, NY at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 5.  At 7 p.m., His Eminence, Archbishop Michael will celebrate a Requiem.  Funeral services will be celebrated at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, April 6, followed by interment in Saint Nicholas Cemetery.

May Walter’s memory be eternal!

This article has been adapted from