Walter Thomas

December 7, 1928 - April 29, 2020

Walter Thomas Parkes, age 91, of Florence, passed away April 29, 2020. Due to the current pandemic situation, a private graveside service was held for the immediate family at Sheffield Oakwood with Chad Holder officiating.

Walter was a native of Nashville, TN and was a resident of the Shoals for over 60 years. He was a member of York Bluff Baptist Church of Sheffield. He was a member of the United States Marine Corps, former National President of NAPHCC, a Contractor Committee member of Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 760, and a former Sheffield Little League baseball coach. He was the founder of Parkes Mechanical and Metals, Inc. He was also a member of the Sheffield Masonic Lodge, Muscle Shoals Shrine Club and other fraternal organizations.

Walter was an avid golfer and former member of the Tennessee Valley Country Club and Turtle Point Yacht and Country Club.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 68 years, Ruth K. Parkes, and his daughter-in-law, Mitzi B. Parkes.

Survivors include his sister, Doris Dorsey, of Corpus Christi, TX; sons, Charles L. “Buddy” Parkes of Sheffield and Kelly Parkes (Donna) of Muscle Shoals; grandchildren, Kimberly Parkes Warren (David) of Tuscumbia, Amelia Parkes of Savannah, GA, and Katelyn Parkes of Ocean Springs, MS; great-grandchildren, Eli and Macy Claire Warren of Tuscumbia and Riley Kate Partridge of Ocean Springs, MS; and numerous nieces and nephews.

The family would like to express their sincere appreciation to the management, staff and caregivers of Home Instead Senior Care and Good Samaritan Hospice for their attentive assistance and compassion.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to York Bluff Baptist Church of Sheffield or the charity of your choice. You may sign the guest register at

No services listed.

9 Comments on “Walter Thomas Parkes”

  1. I will catch you on the back nine my friend and I’m not surprised that you and Ruth are together again after a short separation!
    Heavenly Blessings!

  2. Kelly and Donna and all the family , I’m so sorry for your loss . Times like these makes us reflect on many happy memories . May God Bless and Lift you all up in this time and times to follow .
    If there is anything we can do , please don’t hesitate to call us .
    Much Love ,
    Johnny & Mary Ann Smothermon
    Wavetly, TN

  3. Mr. Parkes and I served together on Sheffield Utility Board. He was a good businessman, a hard worker and contributed to our mission. I admired him for his good qualities.

  4. Buddy and Kelly, I pray that God gives you comfort and peace. Your dad was a good friend to me and I love him very much. I grieve with you in his departure form this world and celebrate with you his eternity with Jesus Christ.

  5. Our most sincere condolences to you and your family are in our hearts and minds on the passing of your father. May care and love of those around you provide comfort and peace to get you through the days ahead. Remembering his wonderful and gentle soul will forever remain in our hearts. May he rest in peace!

  6. Dear Parks Family,

    Our sympathy is extended and prayers abound for your peace. We fondly recall many wonderful memories of Walter (and Ruth) at the PHCC /industry events. He always had a twinkle in his eye, a smile on his face, a joke for almost every occasion and always knew were the nearest 9 hole course was:-). His focus was his faith, family and friends. You could always trust his word and knew when he was speaking with you he was listening and really cared. In his sharing the story of the Parks mechanical, he certainly noted God’s hand was very vivid. He was a fine gentlemen and astute business person. He left our industry better for leadership and left each us better for his friendship. He was always willing to share his faith, this earthly journey was short, but He knew Heaven was his real home. We can find peace in the reality Walter has witnessed God’s smile, felt His perfect loving embrace and heard those most precious words “Welcome home, my good and faithful servant”. What a comfort we can find in God’s promise of eternal life and knowing it is not about saying “Goodbye, but until we meet again”. In Christ’s love and Friendship, Mary and John Garvelink

  7. Jim & Pat Lewis Broome County N.Y. PHCC

    Buddy & Kelly,
    So sorry to hear about Walter. Walter and Ruth were great and wonderful people to be with. He was a hard , faithful and knowledgeable member and officer for the PHCC. His smile and wit were always a welcomed presence at all the PHCC functions. May God Bless your family

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