Our beloved patriarch, Warren, died peacefully on April 2 at Monte Vista Grove Homes, where he had been a resident for six years. The staff at MVGH treated Warren and the rest of his family with love, kindness and strong support until the end.
Warren was born in Venice Beach as the youngest son of Campbell Gardner and Faye Walker. During his adolescence, the family moved to Sunland-Tujunga, where he raised turkeys, rabbits and horses on the family’s small ranch. He graduated from Verdugo Hills High School in 1940 and went on to the College of Veterinary Medicine at Colorado A&M, now Colorado State University. Warren served as president of his senior class and president of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity before graduating in 1945. He was a captain in the Army Veterinary Corps and was stationed in Manila, Philippines, where he was the port veterinarian (1947-49). After serving in the Army, he worked for another year with the Marshall Plan (UNRA), which resupplied farm animals to devastated European countries.
Warren married Betty Ferguson, whom he met at Colorado A&M. Together they moved to Sunland, where he built and started his first practice at Verdugo Pet Hospital (1950-1958). He then built and practiced at Crescenta Cañada Pet Hospital (1959-65), and ultimately built La Cañada Pet Clinic in 1965 and practiced there until 1988. He was a founding member and participated in building Eagle Rock Emergency Pet Clinic. Warren and Betty had two children, Woody and Wendy.
Warren and Jean Savage married in 1974, and lived in La Cañada Flintridge the past 45 years. They enjoyed an amazing life that included spending much of their time on their beautiful Bighorn Ranch in Springville, California. The memories they created for their kids, grandkids and extended family will be cherished forever and included trips to the ranch, ski trips to Mammoth, boat trips to the river and San Juan Islands near Canada.
During his professional career, Warren was a member of the Sunland Tujunga Rotary Club, president of the Sierra Veterinary Medical Association (1964), president of the American Animal Hospital Association (1977-78), and served on the board of the Morris Animal Foundation.
One of Warren’s lifelong passions was horses, which he started riding when he was 2 years old. He enjoyed breeding, training and riding them and had some success with his thoroughbreds at racetracks in California, Arizona and Mexico. He was a member of the Saddle and Sirloin Club in Los Angeles for many years, and the Round Up Riders of the Rockies, where he completed 24 100-mile trail rides in the Rockies in 24 consecutive years.
Warren is survived and will be missed by his loving wife, Jean Walker; his son Woody Walker, DVM (Terry); his daughter Wendy Walker Sommars (Lee); and grandchildren Wes and Wade Walker, and Travis (Melanie) and Tyler (Sarah) Lueke; Jean’s brother Jim Savage (Yvonne) and sister Joan Savage (Jim), who were also part of his life.
Warren was an amazing, multifaceted and talented man, while also remaining humble and kind to all he met. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, June 15, at the Saddle and Sirloin Club, 3933 Rigali Ave., Los Angeles. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be sent to the Morris Animal Foundation, 720 S. Colorado Blvd., Denver, Colorado 80246 or visit MorrisAnimalFoundation.org.