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Walter “Wally” Lewis Williamson

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Even when you know it’s coming, saying goodbye to one who is so dearly loved is heartbreaking. But there’s great joy in knowing that after closing his eyes for the last time on this earth, our dad, Wally Williamson, opened his eyes to see Jesus face to face in Heaven.

Wally passed from this life on June 17, 2020, at his home in Waxahachie, Texas. Born Walter Lewis Williamson on December 16, 1937, in Baltimore, Maryland, Wally was the only child of Ralph Allen and Clarita Elaine (Callahan) Williamson. He was the son of a soldier, and he followed in his dad’s footsteps to make the Army the first of several successful careers. With his Texas bride, Dora Anna (Uecker) by his side, he served the country he loved so much across the States and around the world. During their 47 years of marriage, they were stationed in Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, Nebraska, Germany, France, and the Canal Zone in Panama. Wally did two tours to Vietnam and earned two Bronze Stars—one with V Device for valor in combat—and a Purple Heart. After 22 years of service, he retired as a major in 1978 to pursue his next career—the ministry.

Wally moved his family back home to Texas to attend Criswell Bible College. After graduating, he pastored a small church east of Dallas for six years. Even after he retired from the ministry in 1990, he continued to serve his Savior as a Sunday School teacher, Bible study leader, and chaplain of various organizations.

Wally’s passion for learning—especially when it came to Texas history and the Kennedy assassination in Dallas—took him down a somewhat unusual path for his next career. He teamed up with Dora, who had by then formed Odyssey Tour and Travel International, to become the chief tour guide and bus entertainer on her trips. His knowledge and flair for the dramatic made him a favorite, not only with Odyssey but with other touring companies in the Dallas area as well. Tour participants never knew who would step onto the bus—Wyatt Earp, Judge Roy Bean, or even Santa Claus!

The joy of Wally’s life was his family. He and Dora raised three daughters, who each brought long-anticipated sons-in-law into the fold—Wally finally had males in the family! Wally and Dora had nine living grandchildren and four great-grandchildren (and one on the way!). After Dora passed in 2005, Wally’s faith and family sustained him as he learned to move forward without his beloved bride. Although our final goodbyes with Dad were sad and painful, we are incredibly thankful for the assurance in Christ that he would soon be reunited with our Mom, who he loved and missed so dearly every day they were apart.

Wally leaves behind three daughters, Deborah (Ronnie) Lowery; Donna (Bill) Bankhead; and Denise (Rich) Armstrong. His grandchildren are Emily (Chris) Burgess, Chance (Heather) Bankhead, and Abby (Eric) Snow; Ethan, Matt, and Luke Lowery; and Micaiah, Elijah, and Lilyanna Armstrong. His great-grandchildren are Hyatt and Hudson Bankhead (and a baby girl on the way) and Hendon and Ellis Burgess.

Wally once told us that his goal was to run his race well and finish strong. He did. We will miss him.

A celebration of Wally’s life will be held at 10:00 am on Wednesday, July 15, 2020, at High Pointe Baptist Church, 101 High Pointe Ln, Cedar Hill, TX, 75211. Inurnment will follow in DFW National Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, Wally’s family requests that donations be made to the following organizations.

Disabled American Veterans (
American Cancer Society (

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