Funeral Services For Philanthropist Pat Walker Begin Wednesday

SPRINGDALE (KFSM) -- Funeral services for local philanthropist Amy "Pat" Seamans Walker, who died Friday (Sept. 2) at 97, will begin Wednesday.

She died at her home surrounded by her family.

Walker married Willard Walker in 1942 after the two met at S.H. Kress department store in Kansas. Seventeen years later, Walmart founder Sam Walton hired Willard Walker to manage his Five and Dime store in Fayetteville and Walker eventually worked his way up to an executive position at Walmart.

During the first ten years of their marriage, the Walkers lived in several Oklahoma and Arkansas cities before settling down in Springdale to raise their family.

The couple established the Willard and Pat Walker Charitable Foundation, which has contributed to medical centers, colleges and universities, public schools, libraries, park and recreation facilities, performing arts centers and museums, churches and religious institutions and social service organizations.

In 2016, Pat Walker was inducted into the Arkansas Women's Hall of Fame.

Willard Walker died in 2003. Pat Walker is survived by her two children, seven grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held for Walker Thursday (Sept. 8) at 5 p.m. at the Springdale High School performing arts center, which is named after her.

A church service will be held Friday at 2 p.m. at Spring Creek Fellowship in Springdale, followed by a private burial ceremony.

The Walker family will receive friends for a visitation Wednesday at Sisco Funeral Chapel in Springdale.

The Walkers' names appear on several facilities around Northwest Arkansas including Walker Elementary School in Springdale, the Willard Walker Field House at Springdale High, the Pat Walker Health Center at the University of Arkansas and the Pat Walker Center for Seniors at Washington Regional Medical Center.

“She was wonderful. She was kind. She had a beautiful presence around everyone," said Mary Alice Serafini, Executive Director of the Pat Walker Health Center. "We want that to carry on, and we have a lot to learn from her legacy."

To read Pat Walker's full obituary, click here.