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Dana Walters, 64, passed away unexpectedly at the Albany Medical Center on November 24, 2018. He was surrounded by his family.
Dana was born April 20th 1954 in Vallejo, California to parents Derek and Beverly. From California, the family moved to Birmingham, Alabama; Levittown, Pennsylvania; and then in 1963 they settled down in Waterford, Connecticut on Hayes Street. On Hayes Street the family has many of their fond memories, and it is where Dana met his lifelong friend Robert Avena. Rob, Dana, and his siblings would play football, basketball and baseball until the street lights came on. In the mid 60’s, the family would spend their summers at Pachaug Pond every weekend. They spent the days grilling, sitting at the picnic tables, and water skiing. Dana was a skilled water skier, and he could easily start from the beach in about a foot of water and slalom ski through the pond. The family bought a trailer and started to go to Quaddick Lake when Dana was in high school, which continued through his time in college. In the winters, they would go to Vermont every weekend to go skiing. He would show off his athleticism on the slopes, and would turn hard on the edges of his longer skis.
He graduated from Waterford High School in 1972, and matriculated at Northeastern University, earning a B.S. in Electrical Engineering. He was a member of Eta Kappa Nu, an international honors society of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and was the President of the student chapter from 1976 to 1977. He was also a member of Tau Beta Pi; an honors Engineering society. While at Northeastern he met his wife Mary Elizabeth English. Just prior to graduation, they were married on March 5, 1977. He continued at Northeastern to earn a Master’s of Science in Engineering Management.
Dana’s career began at Public Service Company of New Hampshire as a Transmission Planning Engineer in 1977. In 1991, he became a project manager for R.W. Beck and Associates. He left there in 1993 to start his career at National Grid, where he had numerous roles, and was deeply involved in the company for eighteen years. He was hired as a Senior Engineer, and he progressed through the years to become a Manager of Transmission Planning for Policy and Process. In 2011, he started his new job at New York Independent Systems Operator, Incorporated, where he was the Senior Principal Planner of System and Resource Planning. Throughout his career, he was a member of several committees and was involved in many policy updates, hiring groups, studies, analyses, oversight, etc. His career was highlighted by his dedication, commitment to his teams, and the relationships he built.
He was a lifelong runner, starting in middle school, where he would go to the Waterford Park and Rec Center in the summer and run races about once a week. He used to bring his brother Brian along with him, and would get him to run the half mile. When he was in high school, he ran Varsity Cross Country in the Fall and Track in the Spring. His senior year, he ran in the All ECC Conference Championship, placing third in the mile with a sub-five minute performance. Until the day of his passing, he was running at least three miles a day. He also shared his father’s love for golf. At age 16, he started an annual membership at Shennecossett Golf Club, and would drive himself there to play frequently. He later enjoyed to golf with numerous family members, and was golfing twice a week with coworkers from NYISO.
Since college, he always had a construction project that we would spend his free time working on. He would spend hours meticulously planning and designing each project. His knack for engineering was readily apparent when looking at his hand-drawn sketches, illustrating every angle, measurement, and choice involved. He occasionally would use the help of AutoCAD and similar tools to enhance the designs he wished to bring to life. He built the majority of his home in Weare; he built a two-story, three car garage at his home in Westborough; and was working on a second-floor addition at his home in Valatie. The majority of these projects were completed without any outside help. He had also finished many renovations in all three of these homes, and was very proud to show off his progress as well as his finished projects.
Other hobbies included working outside on his lawn or in a vegetable garden, proudly coaching his children in a variety of sports, playing board games, and recently started a hobby of bowling each week with his wife.
He is survived by his wife Mary English Walters, his children: Aaron and his wife Jessica Walters; Carrie and her wife Kimberly Walters; Ryan and his wife Melinda Walters; and Brittany Walters; his parents, Derek and Beverly Walters; his sisters Denise Amburn and Cathleen Walters; his brothers Brian Walters and Kim Walters, their respective spouses, as well as many nieces and nephews, and three grandchildren Aidan, Ella and Abby Ricker. He loved, and was loved, very much.
In lieu of flowers, send financial donations to the American Red Cross at https://www.redcross.org/donate/donation.html/ or consider making a blanket here for Donate Life: http://www.cdtny.org/donor-families/celebration-of-life-quilt/
Calling hours will be held on Saturday, December 1st, from 1:00 to 3:00 PM, followed by a Celebration of Life from 3:15 to 5:00 PM in the Williams-Pedersen Funeral Home, Inc., 45 Main Street, Upton, MA 01568.
Burial will take place on Monday, December 3rd, at 10:00 AM at Pine Grove Cemetery, 106 South Street, Westborough, MA 01581.