Col. Robert E. M.D. (ret.)
Col. Robert E. Walden, M.D. (ret.) passed from this earth peacefully in his sleep at 5:45 a.m. on Friday, October 12, 2012, at the age of 92. His health failed in May of this year and he succumbed to illness after a brave and lengthy struggle.
Dr. Walden was a founding faculty member of the Medical College of Ohio. He moved to Toledo in 1968 to help create the curriculum for the charter class of medical students, and moved his family here a year later. As Director of Psychiatric Inpatient Services at MCO, Dr. Walden developed the college's first clinical psychiatric unit. He served on the college's Affirmative Action and Admissions committees. And, he was an Adjunct Assoc. Professor of Psychiatry at the Univ. of Toledo. He retired from MCO as an Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry in 1990.
He was a 1st Lieutenant in the USAR Medical Corps during WWII, and Captain in the USAFR Medical Corps following the Korean War. He continued his service to this country and our veterans while working for the Veterans Hospital Service in civilian life. And, he returned to military service as a Lt. Colonel in the USAR Medical Corps in the 1970's. He also traveled to the Soviet Union as a civilian medical ambassador during the Cold War. He retired from military and government service in 1984 at the rank of Colonel.
Dr. Walden was a trailblazer in the fields of mental health and community medicine.
He helped to humanize and reduce the number of chronically-ill psychiatric inpatients by introducing innovative, humane therapy to their treatment. He was also a strong advocate of reintroducing patients to society.
He was the founder and project director of the Cordelia Martin Health Center on W.Bancroft St. in 1969. And, he pioneered health screening programs under the Model Cities program in the 1970s.
A graduate of Lincoln University (Pennsylvania) and Meharry Medical College (Tennessee), Dr. Walden was a Life Member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, and a founding member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity - Alpha Phi Boulé. He was Past-President of the Ohio Psychiatric Assoc., and was an international lecturer, presenting papers in the Philippines, Japan, and throughout the U.S. He's listed in Who's Who in America.
Dr. Walden was an active Congregationalist, and gave generously to the church throughout his life. He served as a deacon and trustee of First Congregational Church of Toledo. And, he was active in National Assoc. of Congregational Christian Churches leadership. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Ethel L. Walden; his children, Kenneth Walden, Roberta Miller, Robert Walden Jr., Dr. Mark Walden and Mary Mitchell, Esq.; 9 grandchildren; 4 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
Visitation is Friday, October 19, 2012, 5:00-8:00 p.m., Boulé Rites at 6:30 p.m., Kappa Alpha Psi Rites at 7:00 p.m. at Dale-Riggs Funeral Home, 572 Nebraska Ave. at City Park. The funeral is Saturday, October 20, 2012, 2:00 p.m. at Mayfair-Plymouth Congregational Church, 5253 Bennet Rd. near Alexis, Pastor David Claassen officiant. Entombment, Ottawa Hills Memorial Park. Charitable gifts can be made in his name to the Lincoln University or Meharry Medical College Foundations.
Published in Toledo Blade on Oct. 18, 2012