OXFORD, Miss. - Donald L. "Donnie" Walker, 73, of Laurel, Miss., a former No. 1 singles player for the Ole Miss men's tennis team in the early 1960s, passed away Friday from complications of heart disease.
Visitation will be at First Baptist Church in Laurel, Miss., on Sunday beginning at 1 p.m. with the funeral service following at 3 p.m. Burial will follow at Lake Park Hills Cemetery. Memory Chapel Funeral Home of Laurel (601-428-5235) is in charge of arrangements.
He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Sue; his two sons, Scott (Anne) of Memphis, Tenn., and Michael (Alice) of Gulfport, Miss.; seven grandchildren; his brothers, Gerald (Janice) of Oxford, Miss., and Glenn (Cindy) of Brandon, Miss; and a host of nieces and nephews.
Born in Biloxi, Miss., Walker grew up in Gulfport, Miss., and later moved to Laurel, where he graduated from Laurel High School in 1958. He graduated from Ole Miss, where he was a three-year letterwinner and the No. 1 singles player. Walker won an SEC Doubles Championship as a senior in 1962 and continued to enjoy the sport throughout his adult life. He was selected to the Mississippi Tennis Hall of Fame in 2008.
After college, Walker returned to Laurel to coach at his alma mater and then spent the majority of his career with Allstate Insurance. He retired in 2000 and enjoyed spending many weekends in Oxford cheering on the Rebels. He was a faithful member of First Baptist Church of Laurel, where he served as a deacon and on various committees.