We lost our dear friend, Walter Sidney (Sid) Penton on October 7th, 2019. Sid was born in Dalhousie, India on September 25th, 1923, one of five children of English Officer Walter Sidney Penton, Sr. and Irish mother Julia O’Riordan Penton. The family moved with their father’s army assignments, including stations in Dover and Gibraltar, then lived with relatives in Cork, Ireland for two years before joining their father who was based in Shanghai, China. During WWII, Sid helped the war effort by working as an aircraft engineer for Short Brothers in Rochester, near his home in Gravesend in Kent, England. When the war ended, Sid moved with Short Brothers’ Belfast, Ireland factory. A year later, Sid immigrated to Canada and soon found employment with AVRO Canada Ltd. He was introduced by his mother and sister to his bride-to-be, Ilse Sellau, a registered nurse who had emigrated from former East Prussia, Germany. The two were married in 1956. A year later Sid accepted a job offer from Boeing. Sid and Ilse purchased a home in Bellevue where they lived for fifty years before moving to The Gardens in Bellevue in 2006. Soon after, Ilse passed away. At the time of Sid’s death, he resided at Sunrise Senior Living in Crossroads.
Sid was a clever and witty man who, along with Ilse, welcomed many friends into their homes. Sid and Ilse improved their Bellevue property over the years (including a remodel by friend Dieter Matthes); they had a splendid garden. Sid was known for helping friends with their building projects as well. Together Sid and Ilse traveled extensively and enjoyed attending the opera and symphonies. The two also went on hikes and reveled in the Pacific Northwest nature that surrounded them at their summer place in Marysville. Sid particularly enjoyed local as well as cross-country float plane trips in a friend’s Cessna seaplane. Sid was widely recognized as a talented amateur photographer who developed impressive portraits in his own darkroom.
Following Ilse’s passing, Sid required increasing assistance, and this need was met by his devoted friend and former neighbor, Patti Stephenson, who provided exemplary care and attention in every way. Theirs was a supportive, compassionate friendship that meant a great deal to Sid.
Sid is survived by his younger brother Terry Penton (Joy) of Tobermory, Ontario and several nieces and nephews in Canada and Germany.
There will be a small gathering of friends to celebrate Sid’s life and his ashes will be scattered over Lake Washington.