Horace Ray Walker, 77, passed away on January 26, 2021 at U F Health Shands Hospital, Gainesville, Florida.
Ray was born at Lake Shore Hospital on January 25, 1944 to Dorothy Bohannon Walker and Leon Walker. He lived in Ft. White, Florida until moving with his family to Lake City before entering the 6th grade. He played football and graduated from Columbia High School with the Class of 1962, remaining close to many classmates his entire life. He joined the National Guard and worked for the Department of Transportation, Forest Hills Building Company and Davy Power Gas until he was appointed the first building inspector for Columbia County. He held that position until he was appointed Tax Collector for Columbia County by Governor Bob Graham, a position he held for 25 years until his retirement. He also served a term as the president of the Florida Tax Collector’s Association, an accomplishment that he was very proud of.
He enjoyed hunting on his property north of town, working around his farm south of town, and fishing and spending time at his cabin on the Santa Fe River as well as fishing at the Gulf. He especially enjoyed spending time with his nephew, first cousins and many friends. Ray never met a stranger and loved everyone. Those who knew Ray knew him to be quite a character.
He was an active member of the Elks, Moose and American Legion. He was a member of the original Seminole Booster Club that hosted the first annual Bobby Bowden golf tournament and was a FSU football season ticket holder for over 40 years.
He is pre-deceased in death by his parents, his sister Imogene Walker Pettyjohn and his brother Louie Lamar Walker. He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Diane, his nephew Don Pettyjohn (Nancy) , his nieces Brenda Pettyjohn Johns, Lisa Pettyjohn Turman, and Becky Walker Lawson (Levis), numerous first cousins and many friends.
Due to Covid restrictions, a service for immediate family will be will be held at a later date.
GUERRY FUNERAL HOME, 2659 S.W. MAIN Blvd., Lake City, Florida 32025. www.guerryfuneralhome.net
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