Walter W. Schneider ‘58

Following MBHS graduation in ’58, I went to college at San Diego State (SDSC) for two years. After that I joined the US Army’s 101st Airborne was assigned to Co E 506th Infantry (the “Band of Brothers” movie fame) and found out why I should have stayed in college. While in the Army I married Sandra Rainwater MBHS ’60 and we had our 1st daughter, Cathy. Discharged in ’63 as a SGT E-5, I went back to SDSC and we had our 2nd daughter, Melanie. While in college, Bob Kauffman MBHS ’59 got me to enlist in the US Army Reserve Special Forces unit in San Diego. Bob and I had a great time in unit training doing skiing, underwater demolitions and parachuting. I was discharged in ‘68 as SFC E-7 because my next job involved going to sea.

After graduating from SDS and thanks to classmate George Hemingway ’58, I went to work for UCSD Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) for 10 years as a marine technician/diving officer. I participated on 26 major research expeditions. Following one expedition, I was able to visit my sister, Judith Schneider ’58 and her family while she was working on US island of Guam with the US Teacher Corps. One of last expeditions was making 200 foot night dives off the R/V Alpha Helix in the Philippines studying Nautilus. SIO was the best job I have ever had. I made blue water dives in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, caught sea snakes in the Indian Ocean, chased beluga whales up Alaskan rivers and slept in Polynesian South Sea Islands native huts. I was divorced (my fault) while at sea.

From SIO, I worked on Cubic’s Air Combat Training System as a programmer/analyst/site supervisor for 20 years at military bases in the USA and overseas. I worked in Thailand for 10 years and while there I married Jidtnah Boonpradit. We were able to attend one class reunion in the ‘90’s at De Anza Cove. Changing employment to DRS Technologies, I worked for a year or more in each of the countries of Japan, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Qatar, and lastly in Iraq.

While working in Germany, I teamed with Rita Price MBHS ‘68 and classmate Bill Swank ’58, via the Internet, to help fund the MBHS Vietnam Memorial monument upgrade. The monument honors our classmates Walter Stevens ‘58 and David Rose ‘58 on it and 4 other MBHS students. I documented the generous contribution that the Class of ’58 donated to the memorial and the names of other donors on the MBHS ROTC web site that I had programmed. I thank you, classmates, for your alumni class and individual donations to the monument.

I am now retired in Thailand, From here, Jidtnah and I traveled to the USA to help care for my sister, Judith, for a few months while she was dying of a brain cancer. Now I am a happy camper in the Land of Smiles and will probably finish my golden years here playing golf and taking on-line courses from www.coursera.org/ . The courses are free and you might want to check them out for your personal enlightenment and enjoyment.

If you come to Thailand, e-mail me at wwsnacts@aol.com and maybe we can link up in Bangkok for dinner or take in some sightseeing together.


Walter