He was born on Nov. 7, 1918, in Chanute the oldest son of Walter R. and Hazel (Scott) Meeker. His childhood years were spent both in Fort Scott and on the family farm south of Erie along the Neosho River.
As a young boy, Walter worked as a caddy at the Fort Scott Country Club, played the cello and sang in a glee club. He graduated from Erie High School and was drafted into the armed forces in August 1941. He served 49 months in the U.S. Army Air Force during World War II. During his service, he was stationed at Wendling Air Force Base in Norfolk, England, received a Bronze Star for distinguished service as a crew chief for the Eighth and was discharged as a master sergeant.
After the war, he returned to Erie and worked for the Erie Creamery, where he met his future wife, Mariellen Bradley, who also worked for the creamery. They married on April 18, 1948, at Erie Federated Church and remained in Erie for several years. Later, they moved to Wichita and then to Derby, where Walter worked at Boeing Aircraft. Walter spent more than 20 years at Boeing and traveled around the country. He notably worked on the Saturn IV Moon Rocket. After retiring from Boeing in 1975, Walter and Mariellen returned to the family farm in Erie. They worked together many years, farming, raising cattle and enjoying the outdoors.
During his life, Walter was a member of First Baptist Church of Derby and First Baptist Church of Parsons. He spent time teaching Sunday school classes, singing in the choir and mentoring youth. He was a 4-H leader and Neosho County Fair Board member, and he volunteered as a camp counselor. He was an avid golfer, and his hobbies included fishing on the Neosho River, working as a forestry superintendent and providing tours of the family farm.
Survivors include his wife, Mariellen Bradley Meeker of the home; six daughters, Scotty Flower and her husband, Mike, of Tulsa, Sally Brimmer and her husband, Dave, of Broomfield, Colo., Margie Marian and her husband, Mike, of Lansing, Betsy Prior and her husband, Scott, of Wichita, Cindy Cox and her husband, Gary, of Udall and Amy Berg and her husband, Ryan, of Baldwin City; and a son-in-law, Perry Bohrer of Erie. He is survived by his grandson, Bradley Bohrer of Erie; and 16 other grandchildren, Sage Flower, Jedd Flower, Paul Brimmer, Rachel Brimmer, Elizabeth Seeley, Kim Combs, Lana Bohrer, Joshua Sickler, Philip Sickler, Julie Sickler Dorsey, Luke Cox, Clint Cox, Lena Cox, Carley Prior, Matt Jantzen and Hillary Jantzen; 14 great-grandchildren, Colt Flower, Logan Flower, Abigayle Brimmer, Anna Gajewski, Caylin Seeley, Lia Seeley, Jacey Combs, Kinley Combs, Nathan Sickler, Rachel Cox, Sophie Cox, Kyan Jantzen, Ella Jantzen and Tyler Mount.
Walter was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Nanette Meeker and Donaleen Moore; a brother, Robert “Bob” Meeker; and a daughter, Judy Bohrer.
The service will be at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at First Baptist Church of Parsons. Burial, with military honors, will be at Odense Cemetery north of Erie.
Memorials are suggested to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and may be left at or sent to the funeral home at Box 942, Parsons, 67357.
Online condolences may be left at www.wallfuneralservices.com.