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 Mildred Irene <I>von Marenholtz</I> Walton

Mildred Irene von Marenholtz Walton

Caldwell, Canyon County, Idaho, USA
Death 29 Dec 2007 (aged 88)
Clatskanie, Columbia County, Oregon, USA
Burial Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend
Memorial ID 32076606 · View Source
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Mildred: Millie; Mummy; Mom; Omi; whichever way you knew her you knew she was unique. She was one of a kind. At her death, the mold was broken. She cannot be replaced, nor would we want her to be. Our memories of her are so numerous that they will last forever and be forwarded on to many generations. She lived a very interesting and diverse life.
Mildred Irene von Marenholtz was born on March 3, 1919 in Middleton, Idaho, the first of five children born to Walter Paul and Lucy (Melton) von Marenholtz. At the age of 12 years, she moved to Germany. Her father had inherited a baronetcy in Dieckhorst in Hannover province. On July 2nd, 1931, she and her ten-year-old sister Mary and six year old brother Walter (Buddy) left Idaho for the journey overseas. They stopped in Missouri to say goodbye to family there and ended up in New York City to catch the Hamburg-America Line ship to Europe. Mildred let her Uncle Ira and Aunt Flora Bray know about the trip and the seasickness she suffered on the way over through postcards that are still in the family. She noted that her ship stopped in Southhampton, England and picked up 250 more passengers before proceeding to Hannover.
Mildred began life as a Baron's daughter learning German, along with the family. She attended a private Lutheran girl's school in Kassel and received extensive training in the art of entertaining. The private school was very expensive. She earned a degree to teach entertaining and cleaning. A major part of the school curriculum was art appreciation, including music. She had to attend a required amount of operas and concerts during the winter months. Mildred's father hired a personal designer for her in order that she have opera dresses. Even her pajamas were special made. Her pet name at school was Baby. The Nazis were coming into power while she was attending this school. She recalled that at one concert the now infamous Nazi henchman, Goehring, was being heralded in by the band. Mildred and her friend both took the long hat pins they were required to have on hand to defend themselves, went under the bleachers where the tuba players were playing and stuck them in their bottoms as they played. Then they ran as fast as they could so they wouldn't get caught and bring shame on their families!
Mildred also remembered that six of her class got permission slips and chaperones to attend the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. She had four tickets and got to watch an exhibition baseball game, equestrian, and swimming events. Her father and brother came to Berlin to see the Olympics while she was there. It was a special time for Mildred and she had great memories of it.
After returning to Dieckhorst, the family estate, she met her future husband, Hubertus Erdmann, when he accompanied his father on hunting parties held by her father. They married April 25, 1939 at Dieckhorst. Mildred and Hubertus ended up living in Berlin, where he was the proprietor of a factory. She often entertained her brother-in-law, Siegfried Erdmann, and his fellow scientist, Werner von Braun in Berlin. Her apartment house was bombed by the allies and she lost many of her possessions.
Sons Paul and Peter were born in Berlin in 1940 and 1943. In 1943, Hubertus was jailed by the Nazi's for speaking against Hitler. Mildred recalled that during her frequent visits to Hubertus, he would pass her notes and told her he knew she would help win his release. She was very afraid that she could not. Another prisoner communicated to her before her husband's September 1944 trial in Potsdam that he himself had been sentenced to death. She was very worried about Hubertus but he was not convicted due to the help of friends and the best lawyer in Berlin. Since her husband was still in danger, they traveled during the rest of the war, trying to avoid the police. She spent much of that time on her father's estate in Dieckhorst.
Daughter Mary was born in nearby Celle in 1945. While returning to the United States in 1947 via Amsterdam, son Stephen was born. She had trouble with the American Embassy trying to take her newborn to America. A call to her friend, Ila Faye (Stubbs) Daniels, a friend of President Truman's brother, helped secure her a Visa for his trip. Mildred came to America on one of the Liberty Ships that were bringing over 40 babies from Europe to their American fathers. Immigrant mothers and their infants were also on board for the long journey. Mildred and her four children under the age of 7 first shared a small cabin with a Polish woman and her many children. She was able to change cabins before the end of the trip to have more room. She remembers that a couple of babies had not been claimed by the time she left the ship in New York on November 1, 1947 but she had sick children to worry about and could not worry about them. It was a miserable trip and lasted longer when a storm delayed their arrival.
After 16 years residence in Germany, Mildred settled in Seattle, where Aunt and Uncle Bray were living. They all moved into their tiny little home until Mildred could get a house. She worked hard on the arrangements to bring Hubertus to the United States, enlisting the aid of Ila Faye again. Hubertus joined the family in 1949. Daughter Ellen Lucy (Dee Dee) arrived the next year. They stayed in the Seattle area, with Hubertus and son Peter becoming American citizens in 1956, along with Lucy and Steve. Together they operated a market in Winslow (now the city of Bainbridge Island), which did not go smoothly. In 1957, after 19 years of marriage and many trials, they divorced and went separate ways. She worked at the Swiss Pastry Shop in Seattle on 5th Avenue, and prided herself that she was one of the first women to enter the union in Seattle. She helped the Albertson Store open their first store there and also worked in a specialty pastry shop. Mildred operated a donut shop in the University District in Seattle called "Millie's Hole-In-One Donut Shop" .
Mildred met her second husband, Charles (Charlie) Walton, in Seattle in 1959 at her shop. They married on September 4th of that year at the German Club on Broadway in Seattle. Charlie was a schoolteacher and later took a job in Onalaska, Washington, where they moved with Mildred's younger children, Stephen and Ellen. Mildred and Charles moved to Clatskanie, Oregon later for Charles to take a position as Principal of the Mayger School. When it closed he continued teaching the Clatskanie School District. During this time, Mildred worked as a cake decorator for Alberton's in Longview, Washington; and after retirement, drove a school bus for the Clatskanie School District.
They moved to Clatskanie, Oregon, where Charlie was a teacher. She finished raising her younger children there. Mildred and Charlie traveled extensively and went to Europe numerous times to visit family and old friends. Mildred and Charlie spent 17 years as 'snowbirds', with Mildred driving their class A motor home to San Felipe, Mexico and Hot Springs, California during the winter months and returning to Clatskanie for the rest of the year. Always on the go, Spring 1997, Mildred drove back from Mexico to California, on to Oklahoma to visit numerous descendents, and then back to Oregon in 1997 at the age of 78. She stopped driving to Mexico at the age of 83 when Charlie suffered an injury.
Mildred celebrated her 88th birthday at Fultano's Pizza Parlor in Clatskanie on March 3, 2007. It was attended by lots of family and friends. She had a great time. She lost her husband Charlie shortly afterwards. Mildred is survived by her five children, Love (Honesty) Israel, Seattle; Peter (Felicity) Erdmann, Seattle; Mary I. Shipp, Kansas/Clatskanie; Stephen (Cindy) Erdmann, Bend, Ore., and Ellen (Jim) Girt, Clatskanie; 19 grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren; and her brother, Robert (Margie) von Marenholtz, Silverdale, Wash.
A memorial was held on 25 January 2008 at Monticello Hotel, Longview, Washington with many friends and family present. Mildred left money for her final send-off, which began with a picture show of her life and memories of her life by her children. Dinner, entertainment and dancing concluded seven hours later. Mini-parties continued in different hotel rooms. Mildred would have loved her last fling.

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  • Created by: Margie von Marenholtz
  • Added: 9 Dec 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 32076606
  • Margie von Marenholtz
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Mildred Irene von Marenholtz Walton (3 Mar 1919–29 Dec 2007), Find A Grave Memorial no. 32076606, ; Maintained by Margie von Marenholtz (contributor 47028174) Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.