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Mack Leslie Walls
Mack Leslie Walls, 69, died on Wednesday, August 26, 2020.
He was a beloved husband, father, grandpa (MackDaddy), brother, uncle and friend. He died doing what he loved – working outdoors. Mack was born September 8, 1950 in Saltville, Va., growing up with his parents Evelyn and Glinford Walls, and siblings Janice, Gilda and Jeff. He graduated from R.B. Worthy High School in 1968 and left Saltville to further his education at Virginia Tech. There, he earned his undergraduate degree in Forestry and graduate degree in Wildlife Biology. After a time in Indiana, he returned to Virginia and enjoyed a long career with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, retiring in 2006.
Bob Duncan, Mack’s long-time friend and Department of Wildlife Resources leader describes his service: “Mack Walls was beloved and highly respected by his fellow wildlife professionals at the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, now the Department of Wildlife Resources. He was admired by his colleagues, sportsmen and women of Virginia; and a wide variety of conservation-minded organizations. Mack was a remarkable individual with the requisite scientific/academic training and adept at working with people of all backgrounds and interest. He was caring of others and a mentor for many of his co-workers. His ‘can do’ attitude inspired his co-workers and his friends in other state and federal agencies. Among his contributions to wildlife management and conservation in Virginia, his leadership establishing and management of the deer-hunting program at the Radford Army Ammunition Plant attracted attention from sportsmen and women from across the Commonwealth. This program was recognized as one of the 10 best deer hunting programs in the Nation! Mack’s contributions to wildlife management will benefit future generations of Virginians and serve as an extraordinary example for aspiring future conservationists.”
Mack’s academic and wildlife conservation accomplishments pale in comparison to his love of family and friends! His love is remembered through fishing and camping trips to Lake Moomaw in Bath County with his sons, Stephen and Jason. Teaching them how to waterski on South Holston Lake. And, their countless trips to Laurel Bed Lake and Big Tumbling Creek - where he had spent time with his father.
Mack had deep love and devotion to his daughter, Jordan, and was always willing to jump in and help with whatever was needed at College Run Farms or with the family. Their bond was special and strong.
In later years, he transferred that love of family to his grandchildren, Pete(16), Ethan(15), Jake(14), Emi(13), Nicholas(12), Marley(11) and Henry(11). He loved his grandkids, launching the most epic summer camp of all time: “Camp Grandpa.” Fishing, camping, tubing, hiking, water fights, amazing food and memories that will never be lost. Whether in person or from afar, he was a cheerleader for their activities: dancing, lacrosse, rock climbing, hunting, fishing, baseball, gaming, tae kwon do, marching band and scouts. And, the annual ski trips to Wintergreen, with his white ski jacket and blaze orange ski hat, where he taught his grandchildren how to ski – each a precious and special moment.
And, then there was his beloved wife Catherine. They met by chance at Chippokes State Park in 1996 and married in 1998. They made an incredible life together and loved each other deeply. Their life together was devoted to their children and grandchildren.
For the man who could give life with a hug, warm your heart with smile and make a connection in an instant – we love you and we will miss you forever!
The service will be private.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Museum of Middle Appalachians, in memory of Mack’s mother, Evelyn Walls Herndon, P.O. Box 910, Saltville, Va. 24370.
To share memories of Mack Leslie Walls, please visit www.seaverbrown.com. This is a courtesy announcement by Seaver-Brown Funeral Service & Crematory, 237 East Main Street, Marion Va. 24354.
Hello. I just received my Virginia Tech magazine and saw that Mack passed away last August. My condolences go out to the whole family. May your fond memories of him be of comfort to you. I knew Mack from our time together at Virginia Tech. I was a grad student in wildlife management from the fall of 1971 to March of 1973. I had finished my US Army stint of over 5 years in August of 1971 and we had meet in September at Virginia Tech when we were teaching a photogrammetry lab class together to undergraduates. We shared ideas and some classes during 1971 and 1972. I earned my master's in March 1973 and went to the Wisconsin DNR to work. Here's a quote from my acknowledgment page in my thesis: "I particularly want to thank Mack L. Walls for his computer programming expertise and his invaluable assistance during the summer session of 1972 with writing the grouping program and with the SYMAP mapping routines. He did the work of a research assistant." His help is as clear in my mind today as if it happened yesterday. My condolences and sympathy goes out to everyone in the family. Rudy Graf now living in Tucson, Arizona.
Rudy Graf Aug 31 2021 12:00 AM
Stevan and Jason We are saddened to hear of your father's passing. May all the memories bless each of you during this difficult time. Rhonda Walls Joe Walls Regenia Walls Charapich
Regenia Walls Charapich Sep 1 2020 12:00 AM
I worked with Mack at DWR but only briefly and only over a few summers in the 90s. But the short time seemed like a life time. I still remember that feeling of being #1 and Mack only knew me for a few minutes. That is a true gift and Mack shared it well. His persona reminded me of Paul Newman - gentle and gifted, and a bit like a movie star! My heart is heavy for the family but full of memories! Tom Wilcox DWR
Tom Wilcox Sep 1 2020 12:00 AM
Mary and I are saddened to hear of the loss of Mack. Our condolences to family and friends. May God Bless
DICK RYAN Aug 31 2020 12:00 AM
On behalf of the Virginia Deer Hunters Association and myself I want to express my deepest sympathy to the Mack Walls family. Mack was a special person. I got to know him back in the late 1980s when the deer hunting program was started at the Radford Army Ammunition Plant. Mack was in charge of the hunts and his leadership was the mainstay that enabled deer hunting at the arsenal to become ranked as one of the top public land hunting programs in the country. In the early 1990s our organization was starting to raise money for college scholarships to fund white-tailed deer research. The officials at Radford agreed for us to auction off archery and gun hunts at our annual banquet with all of the money earmarked for our scholarship grant program. Mack was the backbone of these hunts that raised thousands of dollars for student scholarships. He knew the property like the back of his hand and made every effort for the hunters to be successful. Mack was also an official Boone and Crockett scorer and each year when we held the Virginia Deer Classic he was there to measure trophy heads; we could always count on Mack. It was always a pleasure to be in the company of Mack Walls. He was my friend and a friend of many. Mack enjoyed life to the fullest and will be greatly missed! Denny Quaiff
Denny Quaiff Aug 31 2020 12:00 AM
I was so sorry to learn of Mack's passing. He was such a good friend, as was his family to mine. We shared many happy moments at Radford. To Steven and Jason, I extend my heartfelt condolences, and likewise to the rest of the family.
Dan Call Aug 31 2020 12:00 AM
Mack was introduced to us by his parents in 1976 when I worked and hunted with his father at Clinch Mt. Wildlife Area. They arrived in the infamous Willis jeep. He was a biologist in Indiana with aspiration of returning to Virginia. In the coming years, we grew closer as career paths, families and raising similar age children became more intwined in Marion. Friendship and respect grew during this time. Mack impressed me with his unique way of embracing what can best be described as a hard-scrabble work ethic and down-home intellect salted with a heaping helping of common sense and self-reliance. These traits served him well with solving problems, completing tasks and making friends. We shared many good and difficult times together, both on and off the job. The bond forged during this time remained as our paths in life eventually took us to distant locales. As we reminisce about our experiences and the good he brought to our world, we were blessed to have had him as a friend and major part of our lives. Amy and I offer our sincere condolences to his loved ones, especially the children and grandchildren to find comfort in cherished memories of "Daddy Mack."
John Baker Aug 31 2020 12:00 AM
I want to express my sincerest condolences to Mack's family and friends. I first met Mack in 1983 when I began my career with the "Virginia Game Commission" in the old Staunton Field Office. Mack was a district biologist in the Shenandoah Valley and he helped mentor me when I was first starting out. Although he soon moved to the Marion Office and later to Surry County, I worked with Mack in many capacities throughout the years. He was always willing to cheerfully assist with any project, had an extraordinary skill set, and was an extremely hard worker. I will always remember him for his happy demeanor and the smiles he was able to put on the faces of people around him. He will be fondly remembered and missed by many.
Mike Fies Aug 31 2020 12:00 AM
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