Lieutenant Colonel Walter E. Price was born 22 June 1926 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and died 11 September 2015 in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Upon graduation from Oklahoma Military Academy in 1944, Price enlisted in the US Marine Corps and then transferred to the Army. He went to West Point in 1946, graduating in 1950. He was an enlisted man in World War II and an infantry commander in the Korean and Vietnam Wars.
Price took Airborne training and served in the 11th Airborne Division, 508th Airborne and the Second Division Headquarters in Korea from 1952 to 1953. He served as a company commander, earning the Bronze Star for meritorious service against hostile forces, and the Combat Infantry Badge.
In Vietnam Price was an Infantry Battalion Commander with the 101st Airborne Division where he earned the Silver Star, a second Bronze Star for meritorious service in ground operations against hostile forces, and 20 Air Medals representing more than 500 air assaults.
Price earned the Silver Star for Gallantry in Vietnam on 17 July 1968 while serving as Battalion Commander of the 3rd Battalion, 506th Infantry. Price's unit was called to reinforce a besieged South Vietnamese unit. Price's lead company made an air assault, moved off the landing zone, and was engulfed by a fusillade of enemy fire. Price "courageously" directed his helicopter over the battle to give ground commanders accurate enemy locations. His coordination of airstrikes and skillful manipulation of gunships were directly responsible for averting "certain disaster" to one of his units. When another company was engaged with the enemy, Price again brought his command and control helicopter to direct ground troops. His Silver Star citation read in part, "His skillful maneuvering and coordinating of forces again averted certain disaster to the ground unit."
After retiring from the Army in 1970, Price taught ROTC at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater. He was executive vice presicent of Stillwater Community Bank 1977–1986, and was a Stillwater city commissioner.