Wally, Waldo, Wunk were the nicknames Wallace Neil Kalina inspired in his lifetime, and those who called him by these affectionate names were likely having a pretty good time in his company.
He was born Nov. 26, 1927 and passed away Jan. 30. His boyhood was spent in Depression-era farm country around Ridgefield, but after high school graduation, his natural curiosity and ambition propelled him to Seattle and the University of Washington. He pledged Theta Chi, and began to polish his farm-boy edges. Upon graduating, he took a job with The Bon Marche, though shortly thereafter he was called to serve in the Korean War.
Wally returned to retailing after two years’ service in the Army, and plunged into the career that would see him reaching top executive levels at The Bon, and subsequently Mervyn’s Department Stores.
After retiring, he found more time to spend with his kids and honed a mean tennis game, but his love of working with his hands and in the soil brought him back to his roots with his farm in Colville.
He spent over a decade happily enhancing his property, doing woodworking projects and cultivating the earth with his tractor.
He missed the people and place sorely when medical issues sent him to Pasadena, California.
He is survived by his six children, Nancy Kalina Healy, Jeff Kalina, Gregg Kalina, Bruce Kalina, Paul Kalina and Stacy Kalina; eight grandchildren, who along with his many friends, will always hold our conversational bon vivant, life-of-the-party, one-of-a-kind Waldo firmly in our memory.
Please come celebrate his life at a reception at the residence of his son, Bruce, on Saturday, March 24, 2 p.m., 19840 N.E. Redmond Road, Redmond, WA 98053.