Walter Otis Heath went quietly to the Lord on Wednesday, February 6th after a debilitating battle with cancer. With the support of Community Hospice of Modesto, he was able to stay at home surrounded by his loving son, family members and friends.
Walter was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana to Walter and Sally Heath on January 25, 1934. He, and his younger sister, Ollie, were raised in Philidelphia by his Aunt Estelle. He also lived in Texas and several California locations. In 1967, he married Bonnie Bell Riley. They made their home in Turlock and enjoyed almost 50 years of love and life together.
Walter was preceded in death by his parents, sister and beloved wife, Bonnie. He is survived by his son Randy (Della) Pratt; granddaughter Melissa (Andy) Challberg; grandson Adam (Katie) Pratt. He was also blessed with five great-grandchildren: Austin, Davis, Tabitha, Leila and Wyatt. His intense love of faith, family and country inspired his journey in life.
Walter displayed a passion for the Lord and loved to share it in song with his amazing voice. He was also passionate about his Nursing Home Ministry. He would visit the nursing homes and sing, read scipture, teach or just hold the hand of someone in need of company. He also shared his talents by volunteering at many non-profit organizations in the greater Turlock area.
Walter had an endearing laugh and smile. He was a quiet, spiritual man of simple pleasures and loved spending time with his family and friends. He was a self-taught man and absolutely loved to learn. He was a voracious reader. Walter never met a stranger that he did not know. He could often be found sharing a cup of coffee at Cindy’s Restaurant in Turlock where he was respected and loved by all.
The family expresses its deepest gratitude to Community Hospice for leading them through a difficult process. They extend blessings to friends and loved ones involved in enriching his life. A donation can be made in his memory to: United Samaritan House of Turlock, Community Hospice or the charity of your choice. He will be deeply missed by a host of extended church family and dear friends.
An internment is scheduled for Friday, February 22, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. at Lakewood Memorial Park in Hughson with a Celebration of Life to be announced.