Walter P. Frey of Hingham and Oak Bluffs died peacefully on April 15 in hospice care at Massachusetts General Hospital. He was 86.

He was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. and spent much of his childhood helping out Opa and Oma in the family delicatessen, where he discovered a love of potato salad and chocolate pudding. He attended Poly Prep Country Day School in Brooklyn and went on to graduate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1956 with a degree in aeronautical engineering. He also played lacrosse there.

His career took him to Grumman Aerospace, Pan American World Airways and Mobil Oil. While at PanAm, Walter was the project engineer from conception through first flight of the monumental 747 aircraft. His career at Mobil took him all over the world, providing technical service to national and private airlines. While traveling for Mobil, Walter attended religious services on Sundays, regardless of the language, and he never met a local beer he did not like, always asserting that “beer is safer than water.”

In 1956, he married Beryl Schelhorn, a graduate of Lasell Women’s College. Together they raised three children — Tabetha, Karl and Tammy — in Garden City, N.Y. The family took frequent trips to their summer cottage at the Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association in Oak Bluffs. The cottage became the host to many croquet matches and cribbage games, and welcomed friends and family during the 50 years that Walter summered there.

After his retirement from Mobil, Walter took a summer job working for the Steamship Authority, where he was always recognizable in his bright red shirt and enormous six foot, six inch stature. His grandchildren loved spending the summer months at the cottage, jumping off his shoulders in the water and listening to him sing Sing Your Way Home at the weekly community sings — always entirely out of key.

His daughter Tammy died in 2004 and was unfortunately soon followed by his wife Beryl, who died in 2010 after battling Alzheimer’s disease. Beryl’s final years were fortunate to bring Elisabeth (Bette) Pust back into Walter and Beryl’s lives; Bette was Beryl’s childhood best friend. Walter found companionship and comfort in Bette until her death in 2017.

Walter loved his family, which includes Tabetha’s husband Lee McCartney and Karl’s wife Patty Cullen. He adored his grandchildren; Kyla McCartney and spouse Elizabeth Wiesner, Kaitlyn Tradd and spouse Benjamin Tradd, Xavier Frey, Aigneis Frey, Augustine Frey, and his great- grandchildren Natalie Tradd and Wren McCartney Wiesner.

A celebration of his life will be held at the Wellesley Hills Congregational Church in Wellesley on Saturday, May 7 at 10 a.m.

Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 309 Waverley Oaks Road, Waltham, MA 02452.