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Walter Anthony Walker, Jr., died March 25, 2021, in Kansas City, Missouri, leaving behind his most important legacy, a loving family and many friends to mourn his loss until we meet again.
Walt was born June 6, 1934, in Anthony, Kansas, to Walter Anthony and Ida Preheim Walker, the sixth of seven children. He was raised in and around Bluff City and Harper, Kansas, graduating from Harper High School in 1952. Ten days short of his eighteenth birthday, Walt followed in the footsteps of his brother, Victor, hero and survivor of the U.S.S. Helena sinking, and began his Navy basic training. He spent much of his service as a radioman on a P2V Neptune aircraft, patrolling the North Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea on anti-submarine duty during the height of the Cold War. Walt was grateful for the many life lessons instilled during his active duty service, and he particularly enjoyed traveling to foreign countries across Africa and southern Europe.
After his service, Walt attended Kansas State University on the G.I. bill, graduating in 1959. That same year, while working at General Electric, he met an attractive coworker, Kay Latchford, who became his bride on July 23, 1960. Walt and Kay spent most of their married life in south Kansas City, raising four children and enjoying close relationships with their 11 grandchildren.
Walt joined the Roman Catholic Church in 1960 and approached his faith with discipline and a desire to grow in his relationship with Christ. He was one of the earliest members of St. Thomas More Church, attending masses in Avila Colleges ORielly Hall before the first permanent church building was built. Walt volunteered his time generously to parish causes, including counting mass collections for many years, coaching youth sports teams, and building adobe houses on a memorable mission trip with his daughter, Cindy, in Cuauhtmoc, Mexico. In later years, he particularly enjoyed his time volunteering with friends at the St. James food pantry. Walt was committed to Catholic education and all of his children were educated in Catholic grade schools and high schools.
Walt retired from the Internal Revenue Service with over 35 years of service in 1996. Upon retirement, he embarked on a second career as a crop adjuster, combining his passion for the outdoors with his love of all things farm-related.
Walt was a proponent of hard work, applying his many talents to numerous projects. He was skilled in construction and as an auto mechanic, often assisting with his familys home renovation projects or car problems. He loved to play tennis and, as an octogenarian, was still enjoying games with much younger opponents. Most of all, he loved to spend time with his family and to hear about the details of their everyday life. Walt spent countless hours attending his childrens and grandchildrens school programs and sporting events. He particularly loved children and was a notorious baby hog at family gatherings.
Walt approached his illness as he approached his life, with faith, courage, humor, stoicism, and gratitude for his many blessings, particularly those of family and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Bess Comes, Libby Walker, Ann Ott; and brother, Victor Walker. He leaves behind his wife, Kay Latchford Walker; children, Tony Walker (Lora), Yvonne Sweeney (Shawn), Cindy Hafenstine (Mike), and Lisa Moore (Chad); grandchildren, Anthony, Jake (Aubrie), Seth, Haley, and Shiloh Walker; Kristin Sweeney and Kaitlin Klinge (D.J.); Josh and Jamie Hafenstine; and Will and Matt Moore; one great-grandson, T.J. Walker; two sisters, Fern Crotts and Judy Parsons; and an honorary grandson, Treis Scotten. The family would also like to express our appreciation to Dr. Benjamin Powers, whose medical expertise and caring wisdom provided Walt with peace of mind and additional years of quality time.
The Rosary will be prayed Thursday, April 8 at 6:00 PM followed by a visitation at Muehlebach Funeral Care 6800 Troost Ave. Kansas City, MO 64131. Eulogy and Mass of Christian burial will be held on Friday, April 9 starting at 10:55 AM at St. Thomas More Church followed by burial at Mt. Olivet Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family would encourage donations to St. Thomas More School or the Bishop Sullivan Center.
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Thursday, April 8, 2021 6:00 PM
Muehlebach Funeral Care 6800 Troost Ave. Kansas City, MO 64131
Mass of Christian Burial
Friday, April 9, 2021 11:00 AM
St. Thomas More Church 11822 Holmes Road Kansas City, MO 64131
Friday, April 9, 2021 12:15 PM
Mount Olivet Cemetery 7601 Blue Ridge Blvd Kansas City, Missouri 64138