Walter “Walt” Phipps

Walter “Walt” Phipps

Beautiful soul, loving fiancé, father, son, brother and friend

Walt was a kind, selfless person with a huge heart. Anyone who knew Walt, or even crossed paths with him, said the same thing. He was a great person, with a huge smile regardless of his mood. He was generous and helped anyone.

The life of the party, Walt kept everyone laughing. At family gatherings, he was the one outside with the kids, playing football or basketball or just goofing around.

Walt was a huge sports fan. His favorite team was the Green Bay Packers. When he was younger, he carried his play-by-play notebook with him. On the baseball field with friends and neighborhood kids, Walt acted as a professional coach. He wouldn’t allow them to leave the field until they met his practice requirements, so the team members would run the bases and, one by one, jump the fence and run home before Walt could catch them!

Walt was a carpenter, took pride in his work, and rarely missed a day. He loved anything that had to do with World War II or history. He told his fiancé, Nicole, “I was meant to be born and live in the 1950s.”

Time with family was important to Walt. There didn’t have to be an occasion to get together. Simply hanging out or around a bonfire was enough. Walt enjoyed spending time with Nicole and their four children, Taylor, Morgan, Austin, and Chloe. “My daddy danced with me; we made up our own dance moves,” Chloe said. Walt treated his stepdaughter Kaitlyn as if she was his own. “He was the closest thing to a father I’ve had,” Kaitlyn said. He also loved traveling with Nicole and Chloe and fell in love with Tennessee. Walt and Nicole planned to move there in the future.

In January 2021, Walt went to treatment in South Florida. Nicole and Chloe moved from Delaware to be with Walt and support his recovery. Walt was proud of being baptized in the ocean, and leaning into his faith made him feel good about his future. He had made amends with himself and his past and flourished in his sobriety. He went to the gym every day and looked and felt healthy and happy.

In September 2021, Walt was in a motor vehicle accident and had surgery on his ankle to install rods and screws. He was off work for six months. They eventually moved back to Delaware to be closer to their children and extended family. Walt thought he could maintain his sobriety with the support system he put in place in Delaware.

Because of the cold weather and the effects of the hardware on his ankle, Walt’s pain increased, causing him to relapse. “On November 15, 2022, our entire world was flipped upside down, never to be the same again,” Nicole stated. “I miss everything about him; his handsome face, smile, silliness, voice of reason, hugs, and most of all, hearing him say, ‘Are you my girl forever? I love you.’ “Life isn’t the same without him. He was truly one of a kind!”

Nicole is a nurse and continues to work in the field of addiction, recovery, and mental health. She said, “I will forever be his voice and continue to help advocate and educate those with substance use disorder and others about the disease of addiction.”

Walt’s fiancé, Nicole Tweedy, provided the information for this narrative.

October 22, 1978-November 15, 2022-Age 43

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