Walter Stanley Blackhall
April 24, 1928 – July 27, 2022
OAKHURST — Walter Stanley Blackhall passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 27, at his home in Oakhurst, CA. He was born in Fresno, CA, on April 24, 1928, to Peter and Louise Blackhall.
He began living in these mountain communities in 1957 when he and his young wife moved to Fish Camp. It was here where their children were born and raised. He chose to make the mountains his home for the duration of his life.
Walt served honorably as a United States Marine near the end of WWII in the Pacific Theater. His chosen career was that of a carpenter and he was responsible for the building of hundreds of homes in Oakhurst, Bass Lake, Fish Camp, Wawona, and all areas in between. His skill as a carpenter was matched only by his work ethic and penchant for honesty, no doubt a testament to his Scottish roots of which he was profoundly proud.
In his later years, Walt was a regular in the Oakhurst area, whether it was meeting his pals at Raley’s, collecting cans and bottles from the local establishments, and donating them to charity, to playing pinochle with the ladies at a local retirement community, to his daily trip to McDonald’s for breakfast (the staff would have his meal ready as soon as they saw him enter the driver-thru). His charm was well known from the bank tellers to the produce clerks, to anybody who would listen to his colorful and often humorous stories.
Walt had a particular passion for all things related to WWII, especially the planes, and anything regarding the Golden Gate Bridge. He could often be found at any site where a bridge was being constructed to, as he put it, “oversee operations.” And he was not shy; he once joined his oldest daughter on stage to sing “Good Night Irene” to a duet with her.
Aside from his parents, Walt is preceded in death by his son Michael, who died in 1962. He is survived by his children, Lisa O’Kane of Studio City, CA, Steven Blackhall of Reno, NV, KerryAnn Berfield of Northridge, CA, their mother Teresa Dixon, his five grandchildren, and Mary Basye, to whom he was married in the 1980’s.
Walt lived life on his terms and passed the same way. As Sinatra put it so eloquently, he did it his way.
There will be a “Celebration of Life” for Walt at Queen’s Inn By the River in Oakhurst on Saturday, August 27th, at 11 a.m.
Please RSVP by text to Lisa O’Kane at 818-388-2787 by no later than August 23rd.