Walter Raymond Bittle

Walter Raymond Bittle, 76, Warrenton, passed away on Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019. Born in Chickasha, Oklahoma in 1943, Walt Bittle grew up in Lamesa, Texas – and at 17 (after one year at McMurry College), moved with his family to California to enroll in Stockton College.
A 1964 graduate of California State University at Sacramento, Walt served in the US Army from 1965 to 1967. He was awarded the Bronze Star for his “Meritorious Achievement” in Vietnam in 1966. He was married to Regina Southern from 1969 to 1981.
Walt taught elementary students in Carmichael, California, and served as President of the San Juan Teachers Association, where he fomented and led a teacher strike. He was appointed to California’s Commission on Professional Competence, where he sat on tribunals deciding the fate of teachers facing dismissal. He served as a member lobbyist for the California Teachers Association and the National Education Association. Walt was elected to the NEA Representative Assembly for more than twenty years and was termed out after serving nine years on CTA’s State Council.
After thirty years at various schools, Walt retired in 1997 at the age of 53. After retirement, he worked part-time as a tour director, limo driver, courier driver, and mutual fund broker. He continued to travel extensively; he made a yearly pilgrimage to the Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon, where he delighted in his time with friends, Fred and Norma. He produced a book about the American Civil War while serving as Secretary for the Sacramento Civil War Round Table and as Newsletter Editor for the St. Louis CWRT.
Walt was a voracious reader, a trivia ringer, an amateur writer, a crusader for justice, and was often described as a topical humorist (mostly by himself). He loved life and he loved an adventure, having driven almost every highway in North America (and a few too many in Southeast Asia). In July of 2004, Walt suddenly pulled up roots and moved to Warrenton, Missouri – a base from which he continued to write, travel, work as a tour director in California, and serve his community in various capacities. He served four years as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Northeast Missouri Area Agency on Aging, and in 2016, he was elected to two years as President of Missouri’s Silver Haired Legislature (and two years as President of its Senate).
In March of 2016, Walt was united with the daughter he gave up for adoption in 1968. Walt and his son, Joel, traveled to Indiana and Delaware to meet a new daughter (Tammy), four granddaughters, and two great-granddaughters (along with extended family and friends).
Walt is survived by his brother Lyndon and wife Jane (and their offspring), and by his sons (Christopher and Joel), two daughters-in-law (Tracy and Megan), and six grandchildren (Alex, Kyle, Adam, Clara, Kate, and Cecilia) – as well as the aforementioned long-lost daughter and her offspring (Ashley, Katie, Liz, Laura and her daughters Kaydance and Chloe, his first great-granddaughters).
If you’ve actually read this far, you need to get a life – before you end up like Walt.
A Celebration of Life will be held Monday, Dec. 2, 2019, at Martin Funeral Home, Warrenton, from 10 a.m.-noon.
Funeral Services will start at noon, also at the funeral home. Followed by a committal service with Military Honors at Jefferson Barracks.
Memorial donations may be made to the Warren County Senior Center, c/o Martin Funeral Home, 510 East Main St. Warrenton, Mo. 63383. Online condolences may be made at www.martinfuneral.net
The family is being served by Martin Funeral Home, Warrenton.

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