Good-bye Walt

Walt went to be with the Lord this week.

I don't know how old he was, but I think he was in his 80s. I met Walt several years old while volunteering at our local senior citizens center. Walt taught square dancing to the seniors.

I met up with him again at a 4-H adult leaders meeting, and we asked if he'd be interested in teaching square dancing to our group which contained kids from elementary through high school. He was more than willing to teach this assortment of lively kids and their less than graceful mothers/leaders to square dance.

What impressed me most about Walt was his ability to interact with the teens. He treated them as equals and intelligent human beings, and they loved him for it.

When I shared the news of his death with my sons, we all felt a sense of sadness and loss even though we haven't seen him for a few years.

Walt is one of the people I consider a role model for living life as an involved, active senior citizen. I never heard him talk about himself, his ailments or the limitations age inflicted. I know many men and women in their 70s, 80s and 90s and have noticed how some become consumed with themselves, their past and their health. Walt was one of the wonderful exceptions.

My hope is that the lessons I've been learning about old age - the positive and negative messages - will soak into my soul so that when I reach that stage I can live like a Walt and be remembered with respect and affection.


  1. I'm sorry to hear of your loss, but it's a lovely testament to his life that he meant so much to You All! ;-} I'm sure You All enriched his life, too!

  2. Nice Tribute, Elizabeth. I am glad you got the word. God bless, Maria

  3. very sweet tribute. My folks are 89 and 92, both with some dementia, and they are not able to reach out like they used to. Walt sounds like a wonderful gentleman - on the the "greatest generation." That age group really has class that is missing today.

  4. He was definitely an active man in the community who did things for others. You're right, he never really dwelt on the past like most seniors; he lived in the moment.