Julius Henry “Jay” Waltuck, 90, died peacefully at the New York State Veterans Home in Oxford, New York, on Wednesday, May 2nd. The son of the late Carl and Libby (Nachmanovitch) Waltuck, Jay was born and raised in Rochester, New York. Jay was a graduate of Benjamin Franklin High School in Rochester. The day after graduation, he enlisted in the United States Army, where he served first as a basic training physical instructor, and later as a dental assistant. During Jay’s time in the Army, his parents moved to Syracuse, where his father, a baker, opened Carl’s Bakery on East Fayette Street. Returning from service, Jay joined his family in Syracuse, and became a baker and master cake decorator alongside his father. Jay went on to operate his own bakery in Baldwinsville, New York for several years.
As a baker in Syracuse, Jay met his first wife, Mary (Kaufman) Waltuck. Together they had two children, Bruce Waltuck of Hamilton square, New Jersey, and Randi Waltuck, of Palm City, Florida. With two young children, Mary urged Jay to work closer to their home in Syracuse, and Jay gave up running a bakery to become a manager in discount department stores. Jay worked at Shoppers Fair and the GEM store. After Mary’s sudden death in 1965 at the age of 37, Jay went into a successful career in wholesale product distribution. First with his brothers-in-law Max and Morris Kaufman, and later in his own business, Jay’s Candyman.
Jay met and married his second wife, Jean (Phillips) Waltuck in 1975. They enjoyed over 42 years of happiness together. After selling his business and retiring, Jay and Jean got to fulfill a lifelong dream, setting out when he was 75, to drive to and visit every place in the United States that they ever wanted to see. In retirement, Jay and Jean continued to live in Jordan, New York, and later in Fort Pierce, Florida, and Wake Forest, North Carolina, before returning once again to the Syracuse area.
Jay enjoyed golf and fishing, and was a long-time member of the Jewish War Veterans. Loved by those who knew him for his warmth and humor, Jay was always ready to enjoy his favorite treat, ice cream. He is survived by his wife, Jean Phillips Waltuck, his son Bruce Waltuck (wife Susie Waltuck) and grandson Miles Waltuck; his daughter Randi Waltuck (husband Al Russo) and grandchildren Griffin Barnett, Blake Barnett, and Eli Wenger; Stepson Rick Phillips (Kathy Leach Hanley) and grandchildren Michael Phillips (wife Mary, great-granddaughter Layla Rose), Stephanie Phillips and Meghan Phillips; Stepson Brett Phillips (wife Valerie Phillips), and grandson Brett Lee Phillips (wife Hope, great-grandson Matthew).
The family will hold a memorial gathering to remember and honor Jay soon.