|Occupation:||Celebrity Family Member|
|Birth Day:||October 8, 1938|
|Height:||in centimeters - N/A|
|Weight:||in kg - N/A|
Father to Hockey's 'The Great One', Wayne Gretzky. He was also a hockey player growing up who coached his son starting when he was only three years-old by building a home rink and having him participate in fundamental drills.
During his high school days, he ran track and was a skilled pole vaulter and long jumper. He really wanted to play professional hockey, but was deemed to be too small.
Tony and Mary owned a 25-acre (10 ha) cucumber farm in Canning, Ontario where Walter Gretzky was born and raised. This is where he met his future wife, Phyllis Hockin at a wiener roast when she was 15 and he was 18. She was a descendant of British General Sir Isaac Brock, a hero of the War of 1812. They married in 1960, and moved to Brantford, Ontario, where Gretzky worked for Bell Telephone Canada. The family moved into a house on Varadi Avenue in Brantford seven months after the birth of their son, Wayne Gretzky, chosen partly because the yard was flat enough to be able to make an ice rink every winter. The couple would later have a daughter, Kim (b. 1963), and three more sons, Keith, Glen (b. 1969), and Brent. Unlike Walter, who did Sharp ViewCam commercials with Wayne and Wayne's son, Ty, Phyllis Gretzky mostly refused to embrace the celebrity that sprang from their son's exploits, although she did a commercial with Wayne for ProStars Cereal in the 1980s and appeared in the video Wayne Gretzky: Above and Beyond (1990).
The elder Gretzky devised numerous creative ways to develop hockey skills. Walter's drills were his own invention, but were ahead of their time in Canada. Gretzky would later remark that the Soviet National Team's practice drills, which impressed Canada in 1972, had nothing to offer him: "I'd been doing those drills since I was three. My Dad was very smart."
Fans come to his house to see his basement, stuffed with mementos from Wayne's amateur career, and his backyard, which, every winter, was turned into a "rink" on which Walter taught his sons and their friends to play hockey. The "rink" was replaced by a swimming pool on the day Wayne was traded to the Los Angeles Kings. His other children – Kim, Keith, Glen, and Brent – were also athletic. Brent, drafted by the Tampa Bay Lightning, played 13 NHL games. Keith, drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in 1985, never made it to the NHL but has coached in the minors (he was Brent's coach when both were with the UHL Asheville Smoke). Kim was an exceptional track and field star, but broke her foot at the age of 15 and never ran again.
Walter was an installer and repairman for Bell Canada for 34 years, retiring in 1991. A work-related injury he suffered in 1961 left him in a coma and resulted in deafness in his right ear. Five days after his 53rd birthday, in 1991, he suffered a near-fatal brain aneurysm which destroyed his short-term memory. His physical therapist, Ian Kohler, married his daughter Kim in 1995. His ordeal is the basis of the CBC movie Waking Up Wally: The Walter Gretzky Story. He spends his time helping charities and fundraisers and coaching at his summer youth hockey camp in California. In his book Walter recounts that during his recovery from his brain aneurysm, the only language he could speak was Ukrainian.
From September 2004 to April 2005, Walter was an assistant coach for the University of Pittsburgh inline hockey team. A long time friend of head coach Bob Coyne, Walter was hired by team president Ryan Gaus as an assistant coach, along with Bob Bradley and Tim Fryer. Pitt participated in the Eastern Collegiate Roller Hockey Association (ECRHA) at the Division I level.
Phyllis died of lung cancer at Brantford General Hospital on December 19, 2005. Her mother, Betty Hockin, died in Brantford on January 7, 2006 from complications from a heart attack.
Walter Gretzky was named to the Order of Canada on 28 December 2007, "for his contributions to minor hockey in Canada and for his dedication to helping a myriad of local, provincial, and national charities."
On February 12, 2010, Walter had the chance to carry the Olympic Torch during the Olympic Relay on the last day of the relay, hours before the Opening Ceremonies in Vancouver, British Columbia, where his son would light the Olympic Flame.
On April 12, 2012, in his home town of Brantford, Ontario, the Grand Erie District School Board opened Walter Gretzky Elementary School. It is part of a dual-track Catholic-Public Green School with the Brant Haldimand-Norfolk Catholic District School Board's St. Basil's School.
Besides Wayne, he had four other children named Kim, Keith, Glen, and Brett.
|#3||Paulina Gretzky||Granddaughter||$5 Million||N/A||32||Model|
|#10||Wayne Gretzky||Son||$250 Million||N/A||59||Hockey|
|#12||Emma Gretzky||$1 Million - $2 Million (Approx.)||N/A||17||Celebrity Family Member|
|#13||River Jones Johnson||N/A||N/A||N/A|
Currently, Walter Gretzky is 84 years, 1 months and 26 days old. Walter Gretzky will celebrate 85th birthday on a Sunday 8th of October 2023. Below we countdown to Walter Gretzky upcoming birthday.