Walter Edward Davies, of Livermore, died peacefully in his sleep at home on Aug. 24, 2020. He was 83.
Walter was born and raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico. His father, Gerald Leo Davies, was a teacher, and his mother, Helen Burritt Davies, an artist. After graduating from Santa Fe High School in 1955, he attended Colorado State College of Education on a music scholarship, changing to a double major in physics and mathematics during the Sputnik era. Upon graduation in 1959, he came to the San Francisco Bay Area and began work at the UC Radiation Laboratory at Livermore (later Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory), where he met his future wife, Nan Kathleen Wood. They were married in 1963.
After eight years working at “The Lab” in physics, optics, mathematics, and computer programming, he left to enter the world of business, beginning in high-end audio. Working with a small group to develop a preservation treatment for phonograph records, he formed a partnership that became The LAST Factory, which he led until selling the business in 2020.
Walter was very active in the local arts community. He sang bass in the Livermore-based chorale, “Sunday’s Childe,” frequently recorded the Livermore-Amador Symphony, and was past president of the Livermore Arts Association.
Walter began to seriously study photography in the 1960s, and 20 years later, discovered the image control and quality made possible with large format cameras. His photographs were exhibited as part of group shows in Oakland, Walnut Creek, Danville, Dublin, Pleasanton, and Livermore, and he had solo exhibits at the Bankhead Performing Arts Theatre in Livermore in 2007 and 2012, and at the University of New Mexico, Los Alamos Campus in 2008.
He is survived by his wife, Nan Wood Davies; his children, Walter Gerald (Meghan Hoover) Davies and Bryn Kathleen Davies (Vince Neil) Ilagan; grandchildren, Selah Isabella Davies, Elisheva Abigail Davies, Aurelio Walter Cornelius Ilagan and Naomi Kathleen Ilagan; his brothers, Patrick, Dennis, Gerald, David and Michael; and sister, Sharon. His sisters Direen and Mary-Helen are deceased.
Walter left a lasting impact on the entire Tri-Valley area and will be sorely missed by many friends and associates he had developed over the past 60 years. A celebration of life is being planned for next year.
Callaghan Mortuary is honored to be serving the Davies family. An online guestbook is available for condolences at www.callaghanmortuary.com.