Walter Schrader earned his bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from Lehigh University in 1949. While at Lehigh, he was a member of the Theta Delta Chi fraternity, the ski team, lacrosse, and football teams. He enjoyed flying, sailing, and photography.
Schrader and his wife, Marijane, split their time between Shelter Island Heights, New York, and Delray Beach, Florida. He was a retired plant manager of Allied Signal, Inc and a member of Lehigh's Asa Packer Giving Society and the Tower Society.