Ralph David WALSH, Jr., 69, of Valdese, passed on to his reward on Thursday, 6 Aug 2020, leaving behind his wife of 47 years, Phyllis BRITTAIN WALSH; daughter Cynthia Marie COMPTON (husband Phillip); daughter-in-law Jennifer BOLIEK WALSH; three grandsons, Christopher, Michael, & Dylan WALSH, and granddaughter Azalea COMPTON RAGSDALE (husband Steven), and two great-granddaughters, whom he loved a lot; brother Roger HARPER (wife Wendie), and sisters Karen HOPKINS (late husband Sam) and Beverly ARNOLD (husband Bill), and lots of in-laws and relatives. David was preceded in death by his parents, Ralph & Viola WALSH; daughter Tracy Nicole and son Chris WALSH. He was the grandson of the late Rob and Cyrillus WALSH.
March 19,1951, David was born in Valdese, NC. He married Phyllis BRITTAIN WALSH at Berea Baptist Church on 22 April 1973. David loved to read, and, for a time, he participated in a bowling league. Before the death of his daughter Tracy, he was an avid photographer and belonged to a photography club in Hickory. David always loved trying new things, and, later in life, he enjoyed roaming the local flea markets and buffets at nearby restaurants. An incurable channel-flipper, he enjoyed westerns & comedies on television & classic rock on the radio.
Unlike most, David grew up working in the market for his parents and learned to cut meat from his grandfather Rob. After graduating from Valdese High School in 1969, David went to Western Piedmont Community College, then Lenoir Rhyne University, where he earned his BA degree in Business. In 1989, he bought a store of his own, then, in 1992, he opened a meat market where he took over the family business producing Walsh's homemade livermush, Waldensian Soutisso sausage, pimento cheese, and other homemade products. He was later proprietor of Sunset Gameroom & Grill, and after that, Giovanni's of Drexel.
Since childhood, David truly loved people and considered everyone that he met a friend. His was a complex personality, but whatever he may have lacked in social tact, he made up for in goofy wit, corny jokes, and the desire to make those around him smile, even if at his own expense. On the few occasions when he complained, jokes were likely to follow in the very same breath. He never met a stranger, but always said that those whom he hadn't met yet were just people whose names he didn't know. He always made new friends wherever he went.
Having an eye for business, David was always on the outlook for a good deal, even downright cheap at times, but on the other hand was a caring, generous spirit that leaves in his wake many debts forgiven, loans forgotten, and countless folks who have benefited from his generosity but will never even realize it. He was bluntly honest but went out of his way to avoid strife, was quick to forgive and the first to forget.
You could always count on David to lighten the mood. Whether filling the role of son or sibling, husband or father, family or friend, man down at the store or stranger in the street, David was truly a character, and one that brought a definite happiness to the world around him.
A memorial service will be held Sunday, 30 August 2020 at Berea Baptist Church, 1394 US Hwy 70 SW, Connelly Springs, NC 28612. The family will receive friends at 3pm, with services following at 4pm.
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