Weslaco: Matilde “Tillie” Walker, 79, passed away on Monday, April 17th, 2023, at the Aurora House in Weslaco. Tillie was born on March 15th, 1944, to Pedro and Victoriana Salinas in Weslaco, Texas.
Tillie grew up in Weslaco and met her soulmate, Johnny Ray Walker. Tillie and Johnny were married in 1965, and they spent the rest of their lives together, raising their son, Jason, in Weslaco.
Tillie’s compassionate and big-hearted personality led her to pursue a career in nursing. She went back to school and earned her GED and Registered Nursing Certificate. Tillie’s career choice was perfect, and she was able to help countless people during their hospital stays. Tillie worked at Knapp Medical Center for over thirty years. She was well known for her excellent nursing skills and worked in every department. However, Tillie was most famous for her impeccable ability to start an iv with precision and tenderness. She was sought after, especially for children and infants, whose iv starts are the most challenging. On occasion, Tillie was called on in the middle of the night. Without hesitation, she would get dressed and race to the hospital, which was greatly appreciated by staff and patients.
When Tillie wasn’t working, she devoted her time to her church. She was a volunteer at San Martin for many years. Tillie’s faith was unwavering, and she spent much of her free time reading the Bible.
Tillie and Johnny raised one son, Jason. Jason played soccer, baseball, and football; his mom was his number one fan. She was the proudest and loudest cheerleader at almost every game, from Little League with the Texsun Chiefs, high school, Weslaco Panthers, MMA Leathernecks, and eventually college football with Sul Ross State Lobos.
Tillie loved family, and she had plenty of them. Often they would get together and enjoy Tillie’s favorite food, Jonny’s cooking. His cooking also came in handy when Tillie hosted football parties. She loved football and cheered on the Dallas Cowboys alongside her son. Family friends, her siblings, and her in-laws were always invited to enjoy the fun. Tillie had countless nephews and nieces who she spoiled, but when she became a grandma fourteen years ago, she was over the moon. Tillie adored her only grandson, Stormy.
Tillie had lots of hobbies. She enjoyed working with crafts and playing bingo. She loved dancing with her “main squeeze,” Johnny. But, by far, her favorite and lifelong hobby was bowling. Tillie was competitive and a member of numerous local leagues, most notably the Texas Women’s Bowling Association. Tillie and her teammates traveled all over the country, winning, losing, but most importantly, having a great time with lifelong friends.
Tillie is preceded in death by her parents, Pedro and Victoriana Salinas; Johnny’s parents, Adolf and Creola Walker; siblings, Guadalupe and Jose Perez and Andres Pedro Salinas.
She is survived by her loving husband of fifty-eight years, Johnny Ray Walker; her son, Jason Walker (Desi); grandson, Major Storm “Stormy” Walker; siblings, Francis Martinez (Joe Martinez), Alberto Salinas (Ana), Anita Castañeda (Oscar), Juan Jose Salinas (Dalia), sister in law, Olga Salinas, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be Monday, April 24th, from 4-9 pm, with a rosary at 7 pm, at McCaleb Funeral Home.