Russell Eugene Gwaltney was born in Roanoke, Va., August 21, 1939. He was sent to be with our Heavenly Father on March, 12, 2021 at the age of 81. He was preceded in death by his father, Charles Wesley Gwaltney, and his mother, Florence Gay Gwaltney Boggess.
He is survived by his by wife, Rita Woodyard Gwaltney, the light and love of his life; son and daughter-in-law, Rusty and Katy Gwaltney; daughter and grandson, Renee’ Moore and Phoenix Moore; brothers, Charles Thomas Gwaltney and Douglas MacArthur Hawkins.
At the age of 12 Russ became a local Salem hero as he was crowned the National Marbles Champion. As he grew into a young man he had many more accomplishments which included service in the United States Navy. Fresh out of the Navy, he became a policeman in Newport News, Va., and then in 1962 moved back to his hometown of Salem where he proudly served for 34 years as a uniformed officer, detective, and member of the SWAT team. He was also a 1980 graduate of the 120th Session of the FBI Academy in Quantico, Va. He left Salem PD with the rank of Captain and went on to become Chief in Dublin, Va., before retiring to civilian life.
Funeral services will be conducted 11 a.m. on Tuesday, March 16, 2021, at Lotz Funeral Home Salem Chapel with Rev. John Furman officiating. The family will receive friends from 4 to 6 p.m. on Monday, March 15, 2021 at the funeral home. ***Donations can be made in lieu of flowers to the Salem Dare Program, 36 E. Calhoun St., Salem, Va. 24153. *****