Walter William Aldridge passed away December 25, 2017
Walter William Aldridge of Heber Springs, Arkansas entered the gates of Heaven on December 25, 2017. Walter was born August 30, 1923 in Sulphur Rock, Arkansas to John W. Aldridge and Bertha Grissom Aldridge. Walter was such a loving and gracious husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. In addition to his family, he loved the people of Heber Springs and Greers Ferry Lake area. He always put others before himself and loved to share the fruits of his labor. After graduating from Heber Springs High School in 1941, he joined the United States Navy during World War II and served in the Solomon Islands during the Guadalcanal days. He qualified for officer candidate school. He attended Harvard University, Drew University and Princeton University. In 1945, he married his hometown sweetheart, Virginia Connell.
In April 1946, he was discharged from the U. S. Navy and returned to Heber Springs where he started a career at the Cleburne County Bank where he eventually was promoted to Executive Vice President and retired after 46 years. One of the highlights of his career occurred while he was on the Board of Directors of the Chamber of Commerce when Greers Ferry Dam was dedicated in 1963 and he was able to be on the podium as John F. Kennedy gave the dedicatory speech.
He was involved and served in numerous clubs and organizations. He served the Lord throughout his lifetime at First Baptist Church in Heber Springs in many areas using his talents and gifts and was a deacon for over 50 years.
Walter was preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Virginia Connell Aldridge and a daughter Vicki Lowe, one brother Raymond Aldridge and four sisters Jewell Doughtery, Vivian Tounzen, Helen Hall and Nevalynn Johnson.
He is survived by two daughters, Marilyn Pettit (Roger) of Heber Springs, Arkansas Luanne Birdsong (Whit) of Searcy, Arkansas and son-in-law Ray Lowe of Nashville, Tennessee. Seven grandchildren, Marc Pettit (Felicia) of Mission, Texas, Kristi Merrick (Jason) of Cabot, Arkansas, Stephen Pettit (Laura) of Cabot, Arkansas, Melody Lowe of Nashville, Tennessee, Matt Lowe (Jenny) of Mission Viejo, California, Bridget Price (Paul) of Searcy, Arkansas, Wes Birdsong (Ashley) of Brooklyn, New York. Eleven great-grandchildren Ashlyn Pettit, Ava Pettit, Hannah Merrick, Harrison Merrick, Hudson Merrick, Marlee Price, JP Price, Rylan Price, Luke Price, Sawyer Pettit, Sadie Pettit and baby Lowe due in May.
The family wishes to express a special thanks to Vickie Sue Kelley for all the love and care she gave to our dad. She was loved as one of his own. Thanks also to Tammy Prince and Marilyn Heffington for care.
Visitation will be on Friday, December 29, 2017 at First Baptist Church in Heber Springs beginning at 1:00 P.M. and funeral services will follow at 2:00 P.M. in the church by Dr. J. R. DeBusk and Rev. Tony Cresswell with interment in Cleburne County Memorial Gardens will full military honors by American Legion Post 64 of Heber Springs. Arrangements by Family Funeral Service. www.dwightfamilyfuneral.com