Cora Faith Walker, a beloved Democratic Party activist and former elected official, has died tragically at the age of 37.
Walker is survived by her husband, Tim. The couple was married in 2012.
At the time of her death, Walker was the policy director for St. Louis County Executive, Sam Page. Page confirmed Walker’s passing in a statement on Facebook.
Walker was a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis and earned her law degree at the Saint Louis University School of Law.
Walker lived in the town of Ferguson, Missouri, a town that became international news in 2014 when teenager Michael Brown was shot dead by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. During her career as an elected representative, Walker represented Ferguson.
Walker represented the 74th district in Missouri’s House of Representatives between January 2017 and July 2019.
Walker’s boss called her a ‘passionate public servant’
In his statement on Facebook, County Executive Sam Page said:
“I am deeply saddened by the passing of Cora Faith Walker. Cora walked into my office every day with a hundred ideas and the determination to do them.”
“She was a passionate public servant who advocated for women, newborns, survivors of sexual violence, reproductive rights, seniors, and frontline healthcare workers.
“She will be greatly missed by her St. Louis County government colleagues and me. We offer our condolences to her husband, Tim, and her parents.”
Walker’s cause of death was a ‘health complication’
According to The St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s reporting on Walker’s death, her cause of death was an unspecified “health complication.”
Walker told the Saint Louis University School of Law website in an interview about her feelings on the area’s response to the pandemic, “I’ve been incredibly proud at the ways in which the folks in St. Louis County led the effort in coming up with these solutions and these approaches, and doing so in a way that was at the forefront of how the region and then the state approached the recovery.”
The Post-Dispatch story notes that Walker was in charge of distributing the more than $173 million designated for local businesses and individuals as part of the county’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
One of Walker’s colleagues, political consultant Richard Callow, paid tribute to her saying, “She was a spark plug on the ninth floor. There is not an apple cart she wouldn’t happily knock over. And then with the apples make a pie and bring it to you.”
Walker’s death comes just after she returned from a vacation in Jamaica
The announcement of Walker’s death comes seven days after she posted a photo on Instagram showing her seated on an airplane on her way to Jamaica.
On March 7, Walker posted a photo showing herself in Montego Bay, Jamaica, overlooking the ocean. It’s not clear when Walker returned from Jamaica.
Walker said that she decided to move to Ferguson after the shooting of Michael Brown
Walker said in a 2016 interview with the Politically Speaking team of St. Louis Public Radio, that she and her husband made the decision to move to Ferguson following the shooting of Michael Brown in 2014.
Walker said, “We made the decision [to move to Ferguson] after the shooting death of Michael Brown. We really saw what was going on in the community and felt really compelled to be a part of helping to move the community forward after what occurred in Ferguson.”
During that interview, Walker said that she advocated the expansion of Medicaid as a means to help the community of Ferguson to heal completely.