Walker, Wilma


Wilma Dowdle Walker died at home in Decatur on Sunday, October 17, 2021, after living with Alzheimer's disease for several years. She was born on December 19, 1934, in Hickory Grove, SC, the daughter of John Lathrop and Mable Smarr Dowdle. After graduating from Hickory Grove High School, she attended the University of Georgia and graduated in 1956. She started her teaching career at East Lake Elementary School, where she taught from 1957-1964. A blind date, orchestrated by good friends, led her to Alfred C. Walker, Jr., whom she married in 1963 and loved for 58 happy years. She took time off from teaching to raise her two young daughters, while earning her master's degree in education from Georgia State University and playing an active role in the life of Oak Grove United Methodist Church in Decatur. She returned to the classroom and taught at Sagamore Hills Elementary School in DeKalb County for many years, retiring in 1997 so she could spend more time with her beloved grandchildren.

Wilma was predeceased by her parents and her eight brothers and sisters. She is survived by her husband, Al; her daughter Carol Walker-Schrader and son-in-law Dirk Schrader; her daughter Susan Walker Goico and son-in-law Hipólito Goico; grandchildren Chloe and Cameron Schrader, and Isabel and Manuel Goico; as well as several nieces and nephews. The family would like to sincerely thank Wilma's caregivers: Kison, Sequoya, Lucy, Juanique, and Belinda.

A memorial service, which will be livestreamed, will be held at Oak Grove United Methodist Church, Decatur, on Friday, October 29, at 11:00 AM. The Reverend Dr. Amy Morgan will officiate. The family will receive friends in the Sanctuary, starting at 10:30. Masks and social distancing are required. A private graveside interment will be held at the Oak Grove cemetery.

As Wilma was a devoted member of Oak Grove's Chancel Choir for decades, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Oak Grove's Traditional Music Ministry or a charity of your choice.

May we serve one another as Wilma did, with love and strength and freshly-baked warm pound cakes.