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WALTER P. PARKER

PARKER, Walter P. Of Taunton passed away at the Philip Hulitar Hospice Center in Providence, Rhode Island on October 22, 2013 due to complications from hip surgery at the age of 96. He was the son of the late James H. and Helen B. (OReardon). Walter was married to the late Mary R. (Heher) for 66 years and is survived by his children, James H. and his wife Sandra of Taunton, and Carolyn F. Lazaris of Somerset. He is also survived by his 5 grandchildren, Christopher J. Parker of New York City, Jess Ivanoski and her husband Michael of Easton, Kerry P. Belski and her husband Stephen of Bridgewater, Michael P. Parker of Taunton, James H. Parker of Taunton and his 6 great-grandchildren, Ashley M. Ivanoski, Ryan C. Belski, Kaitlyn G. Ivanoski, Zack M. Ivanoski, Caroline E. Belski, and Abigail K. Belski. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his siblings, James, John, Ann (Ducharme), Helen (Dupont), Theodore, and Arthur. Walter, a life-long Taunton resident attended Taunton Schools and was a communicant of St. Marys Church. He graduated from Taunton High School in 1936 and joined the U.S. Army in 1941. He attended Officers Candidate School and served with the 14th Armored Division in France and Germany during World War II. He earned a Silver Star, a Bronze Star, 3 battle stars and the Army Commendation Medal. He served in the Massachusetts National Guard and the U.S. Army Reserves, as Executive Officer, 726th Maintenance Battalion and as Commander 320th Military Police Battalion, retiring in 1967 with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. In his early career, he was the New England sales representative for the Dechau Optical Company in Providence, Rhode Island. Public service and politics were a family passion and his early experiences were with his brother Johns early political campaigns for school committee and mayor. He was the campaign manager for Elliot L. Richardsons campaigns for Lieutenant Governor and Attorney General. Following these successful campaigns, he served as Mr. Richardsons primary assistant in both the Lieutenant Governors and Attorney Generals Offices. Although offered a position in Washington following Mr. Richardsons appointment to Under Secretary of State, Walter chose to stay in Massachusetts as the Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Public Safety. In this position he oversaw the implementation of a computer law enforcement system (a novel concept at the time) and the ending of the barracks system for State Troopers. From 1972 until his retirement in 1996 he served as Regional Administrator in the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment Standards Administration and the Wage Hour Administration. There he oversaw the enforcement of regulations protecting US workers, including, women, minorities and Vietnam Era Veterans. Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Marys Church, St. Marys Square, Taunton, MA at 10 AM on Monday, October 28, 2013, followed by internment at St. Francis Cemetery, Oakland. Relatives and friends are invited to visiting hours on Sunday, October 27 from 4-7 at OKeefe Wade Funeral Home, 70 Washington St., TAUNTON, MA 02780. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: The Heher-Parker Scholarship Fund, St. Marys Primary School, St. Marys Square, Taunton, MA 02780 or Homes for Our Troops, 6 Main Street, Taunton, MA 02780. Visit our website www.okeefewade. com to sign our guestbook, obituaries & directions.

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Published in The Boston Globe on Oct. 25, 2013
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