Walton Walker was born on December 3, 1889, in Belton, Texas. He entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point on June 15, 1907, but resigned on October 7, 1907. He then reentered the Academy on March 3, 1908, and was commissioned a 2d Lt of Infantry on June 12, 1912. Lt Walker next joined the 19th Infantry Regiment at Fort Sheridan, Illinois, and served at Fort Crockett, Texas; Vera Cruz, Mexico; Galveston, Texas; and Fort Sam Houston, Texas, from June 1912 to May 1917. He served as a Battalion Commander and then as Regimental Adjutant with the 57th Infantry Regiment at Camp Funston, Texas, from May to December 1917, and then served with the 13th Machine Gun Battalion at Fort Sam Houston from December 1917 to April 1918. Maj Walker deployed with the 13th Machine Gun Battalion to France in April 1918, and served as Commanding Officer and Battalion Commander during World War I from April 1918 to July 1919. His next assignment was as an Instructor with the Machine Gun Department at Camp Benning, Georgia, from July to December 1919, followed by Field Artillery School at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, from January to December 1920. He served as an Instructor in the Machine Gun Section of the Infantry School and then Chief of the Third Machine Gun Section in the Department of Military Art at Camp Benning from December 1920 to August 1923. Maj Walker served as a Company Commander and Instructor at West Point from August 1923 to June 1925, and then attended Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, from September 1925 to June 1926. His next assignment was as an Instructor at the Coast Artillery School at Fort Monroe, Virginia, from June 1926 to July 1930, followed by service as Commander of 2nd Battalion of the 15th Infantry Regiment at Camp Burrowes, Chinwangtao and American Barracks, Tientsin, China, from September 1930 to March 1933. He served as a Company Commander and then Battalion Commander with the 34th Infantry Regiment, and as Commanding Officer of the Civilian Conservation Corps Conditioning Camp at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland, from April 1933 to January 1934. His next assignment was as Assistant Corps Area Inspector with Headquarters 3rd Corps Area at Baltimore, Maryland, from January 1934 to June 1935, followed by Army War College at Washington, D.C., from August 1935 to August 1936. LtCol Walker served as Post Executive Officer and then as Brigade Executive Officer with the 5th Infantry Brigade at Vancouver Barracks and Fort Lewis, Washington, from August 1936 to June 1937. He next served as a Staff Officer in the War Plans Division with the General Staff Corps in Washington, D.C., from August 1937 to April 1941, followed by service as Commanding Officer of the 36th Infantry Regiment at Camp Beauregard and Camp Polk, Louisiana, from April to June 1941. Gen Walker served as Commanding General of the 3rd Armored Division at Camp Polk from August 1941 to August 1942, and then as Commanding General of IV Corps at Camp Young, California, and then at Camp Campbell, Kentucky, from August 1942 to October 1943. He remained in command when IV Corps became XX Corps, and deployed with his unit to England in February 1944, serving in the European Theater until returning to the United States in May 1945. His next assignment was as Commanding General of 8th Services Command in Dallas, Texas, from May 1945 to May 1946, and then as Commanding General of 6th Services Command and 5th Army in Chicago, Illinois, from May 1946 to September 1948. His final assignment was as Commanding General of 8th Army during the Occupation of Japan and during the beginning of the Korean War from September 1948 until he was killed in an auto accident in Korea on December 23, 1950. Gen Walker was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
His 2nd Distinguished Service Cross Citation reads:
For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy of the United Nations while serving as Commanding General of the 8th United States Army. Lieutenant General Walker distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism in action against enemy aggressor forces in the Republic of Korea from 14 July to 28 September 1950. During this campaign General Walker personally, and at great risk to his own life from enemy ground fire, performed repeated aerial reconnaissance flights in unarmed plane deep into enemy territory. The knowledge gained by General Walker from these flights was of inestimable value to him in making tactical decisions, and contributed greatly to the accomplishment of his mission in spite of the preponderance of force possessed by the enemy. In addition to the above and with personal disregard not only of health of but life itself, he spent hour after hour and day after day on the battlefield, inspiring the United Nations forces with his own courage and his will to fight. Where acts of personal courage were common, General Walker's fearlessness and courageous leadership were outstanding.