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Cw04 Woodfin "Woody" Walker USAF, Ret.

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Cw04 Woodfin "Woody" Walker USAF, Ret. Obituary
CW04, Woodfin "Woody" Olsen Walker, USAF

CW04, Woodfin "Woody" Olsen Walker, USAF, ret., 92, former chief engineer for WFSU-TV, went to be with his savior on Sunday, July 13, 2014 at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital surrounded by his devoted and loving children, grandchildren and friends. Woody was born on October 1, 1921 in Haw Ridge in rural Dale County Alabama. He was the last surviving child of Solon and Ola Ann Walker. Woody's childhood years were spent on the family farm and in the nearby town of Ozark. He left in 1939, at the age of 18, to join the U.S. Army Air Corps as a radio communications specialist. In World War II, he performed a variety of tasks, specifically installing communication links as needed for the war effort. Woody served in North Africa, Italy, France, England and India. After the war, he transitioned to the newly formed United States Air Force and was called upon to preform duties relating to the installation of the DEW Line in the Arctic and later the Cuban Missile Crisis, among others. Woody's time in the Artic gave him a continuing love for all things Alaska. Upon his retirement from the USAF, in 1962 and the rise of television, Woody became a broadcast engineer with WSFA in Montgomery, AL. In 1968, he moved his family to Tallahassee, where he accepted a job at WFSU as chief engineer. During this time, Woody was influential in putting WFSU on the map technically, as he set up the first satellite uplink facility in the area, which was used by the major broadcast networks when they were covering stories in North Florida. Woody was also instrumental in the expansion, design and building of the current WFSU Broadcast Center.Though he retired from his formal position at WFSU in 1995, he continued to give back to WFSU as a consultant and later as the curator of the antique radio museum's, "The Kirk Collection."While continuing his involvement with WFSU, Woody enjoyed spending his retirement with his family and friends. He loved taking his wife, Jean, to her weekly hair appointments, making his daily rounds to Publix, keeping up with his grandchildren on social media, and caring for his Westie, Reilly. Woody was preceded in death by his two parents and seven brothers and sisters. He is survived by his wife, of 67 years, Jean , daughter Cassandra Durham (Marietta, Georgia), son, Dr. Timothy Walker and his fiancée, Allison Tringas (Destin, FL), and son Jeff and daughter-in-law Kelli (Tallahassee, FL). In addition, Woody was the proud grandfather of Daphne, Ligon and Michael Durham; Andrew, Seth, Ansley, Mark Thomas, Lydia; Caroline and Scott Walker. Woody had one great-grandchild, Adam Durham. Woody is loved and will be missed by all who knew him.Funeral services will be held on Friday, July 18 at 1 p.m. at Culley's MeadowWood Funeral Home, Timberlane Road. A visitation will be held at Culley's, Thursday, July 17 from 6 to 8 p.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to WFSU, 1600 Red Barber Plaza, Tallahassee, FL 32310.


Published in Tallahassee Democrat on July 15, 2014
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