Eleanor D. 'Dolly' Walker was born on November 15th, 1918, and went to be with the angels on February 15th, 2021 at the age of 102 years and 3 months.
Dolly was born Eleanor D. Vorlicky in St. Paul, MN to James W. Vorlicky and Mary D. (Eller) Vorlicky on November 15th, 1918. She was the youngest of 13 children in the family.
Dolly would go on to meet and marry Thomas D. Walker on May 28th, 1938 at St. James Church in St. Paul, MN. Dolly waitressed at the Little Chef at Dayton's in downtown St. Paul and at the Golf Club at Keller occasionally, but her heart was in caring for the three boys that she and Tom went on to have. Her love for her family was immense, and only grew bigger with time as it multiplied with births and marriages. She would take on many roles, but none more meaningful to her than that of our family Matriarch. She would hold the family together through both great times and bad, even stepping in to help care for more than one generation. Always there to pick us up-though it may involve a finger wagging and stern look.
Dolly's family would make many memories playing card games around her dining room table surrounded by her giant collection of miniature tea cups and saucers. Overlooking her backyard filled with bird feeders where she would watch closely for all the birds, especially cardinals, she loved seeing cardinals when they visited. Holidays were filled with many days of celebrations in order to include all the family branches, each celebration would be held in the midst of her grand collections of holiday decorations. Though no holiday topped Christmas, Dolly's Christmas was a special event and took over the whole house! Of that grand Christmas display, her collection of Angels would grow to be something anyone who was lucky enough to see would remember forever.
Dolly made so many things memorable, but one that stood out- was her nickname, Dolly. That name brought her to participate in a 'Hello Dolly' Pageant and would lead her to be invited as a special guest to the production of 'Hello Dolly' in April of 1992.
Dolly was also a very talented baker, making special cakes for all her friends and families at every occasion and holiday- they were not only delicious but beautiful and anyone who seen or tasted them knew they were made with a huge amount of love.
Through the years Dolly was known for many things, but one of the most special to her, was square dancing. It was something that both she and her beloved husband Tom enjoyed together greatly The beautiful matching outfits, the friends, the memories while twirling around dance floors, were all something very special. Seeing Dolly and Tom dance, you could see what a true love they had for each other. That love didn't end when Tom passed on June 16th of 1989. She would sweetly pat his headstone and say 'see you soon' before ending each visit to his final resting place at Fort Snelling.
Dolly would go on for many more years beyond when her beloved husband passed. She was still baking those cakes, still collecting those angels and miniature tea cups, decorating for holidays, watching for birds, traveling, and still baking pumpkin and banana breads. All the while caring deeply for her loved ones, and giving that finger wagging stern look, as she celebrated her 100 years! She ushered in her 100th year with a big party, filled with family and friends, a letter from the white house, then again with a limo ride and special dinner where she enjoyed an old fashioned with a smile on her face.
She held that smile and sass to the end, just as that 37,347 days of a life entitled her to.
She was a remarkable woman. She was our glue. She was our matriarch.
Dolly was preceded in death by her parents, all of her siblings, her dear husband Thomas D. Walker Sr; her sons Thomas Walker Jr, and Gary Walker Sr; daughters in law Betty Walker, Mary Walker, and Darlene Walker; and her great-grandson Michael J. Montour Jr.
She is survived by her son Richard Walker; a daughter in law Gerri Walker; grandchildren Connie Walker, Tom Walker Jr, Mark Walker Sr, Dawn Walker, Gary (Misti) Walker Jr, Debbi Walker, and Mary Dahlstrom; grandchildren by marriage Frank Thiele, Rick Theile, Tony (Lisa) Schroeder, Troy (Correen) Schroeder, Debbie (Jamie) Buoy, Wayne (Lauren) Buse, Joe (Linda) Buse, Theresa (Greg) Maher, Jim Buse, Tom (Linda) Buse, Scott (Sue) Buse, Cheryl Sperl, and Raymond (Wendy) Sperl; and many great-grandchildren, great-great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and special friends.
Visitation 4-8pm Wednesday, February 24th at Kessler & Maguire Funeral Home, 640 W. 7th St and 10-11am Thursday at church. Mass of Christian Burial 11am Thursday, February 25th at St. Francis de Sales, Palace & Osceola. Burial at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.