Gary Reed Van De Walker, 56 year old Mt. Shasta pastor, passed away unexpectedly early Tuesday morning, January 2, 2018. Gary was born November 16, 1961 in Hemet to Dwight and Gwendolyn Van De Walker. He was raised in Lake Elsinore and Bellflower before the family moved to Mt. Shasta where he graduated high school in 1979. He then attended College of the Siskiyous in Weed for 3 years and completed a double major in Humanities and Religious Studies from Chico State. He continued his education with a Master’s degree from Westminster Theological Seminary in Escondido and a Doctorate, with honors, at Trinity Seminary-University of Liverpool in Philosophy and Apologetics.
On December 29, 1984, Gary and Monica Heisel were married. Gary worked as an Associate Pastor with the Cornerstone Church in Escondido. In 1994, they moved to Mt. Shasta, where Gary took a position as an Associate Pastor with the Evangelical Free Church of Mt. Shasta and in January of 2006, he became their Sr. Pastor. He was also a part time Adjunct Professor for Simpson College.
The Boy Scouts were very important to Gary, being an Eagle Scout himself and serving as a leader in various roles in Mt. Shasta. He was a writer for the Enjoy Magazine, a huge Star Trek fan, a practical joker and was a voracious reader and researcher, especially in genealogy. He served on the board of Kidder Creek Orchard Camps. He was very involved in “Seekers”, a college-aged group ministry, and their “World View Week”. He was extremely educated but was known as an approachable intellectual.
Gary is survived by his wife, Monica, his mother, Gwen and three sons, Jonathan, Timothy and James, all of Mt. Shasta. He is also survived by a sister, Heidi (Darrill) Riddle of Georgia, a brother, Wayne (Mariah) Van De Walker of San Anselmo and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father.
The Core Values of the church in Mt. Shasta were extremely important to Gary: Knowing Christ, Knowing His People and Making Him Known!
A Celebration of Life service will be held on Saturday, January 13, 2018 at 1:00 P.M. at the Evangelical Free Church of Mt. Shasta on W A Barr Rd. in Mt. Shasta. Burial will be private in the Mt. Shasta Memorial Park. Girdner Funeral Chapel is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences can be made at girdnerfuneralchapel.com.