Gordon L. Walker, acclaimed marathon runner - The Buffalo News

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Gordon L. Walker, acclaimed marathon runner

Nov. 16, 1934 – Jan. 9, 2014

Gordon L. Walker, who took part in the Boston Marathon 10 times after he started distance running at age 47, died Thursday under Hospice care in his Town of Tonawanda home after a struggle with cancer. He was 79.

Born in Cleveland, he came to Buffalo in the late 1940s and attended School 56 and Lafayette High School. He served as a photographer in the Army from 1957 to 1960 and was stationed in the Panama Canal Zone.

A longtime resident of Buffalo’s Parkside neighborhood, Mr. Walker worked for several years at Loblaws supermarkets, then became a house painter. He was particularly proud of his multi-colored work on Victorian homes.

Known as “Flash” to his running colleagues, he took part in numerous marathons and once ran the Skylon Marathon in less than 3 hours.

He was a member of the Belle Watling Running Club and the Buffalo Philharmonic Athletic Club. He was a Buffalo News Runner of the Year in his age group in 1990 and 1995.

He also was an avid long-distance bicyclist, crossed many states on his bicycle and once rode from Buffalo to Florida.

He raised enough money for the annual Ride for Roswell to be part of the Extra Mile Club.

He also enjoyed skiing and hiking the Adirondacks and the Appalachian Trail.

He was a member of Unitarian Universalist Church of Buffalo.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, the former Elaine Haddock; and two sons, Kevin and Allen.

A celebration of his life will be at 1 p.m. Saturday in Unitarian Universalist Church of Buffalo, 695 Elmwood Ave. at West Ferry Street.

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