Creating waves of change

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burke saluteWalter V. Burke, right, accepts his Salute to Seniors citation from Bankers Life and Casualty Branch Office Coordinator JT Buco during a recent presentation at the firm’s office in Warwick. Burke, 63, was the subject of the Salute to Seniors feature in the June issue of “Senior Digest” for all the work he has done as the director of parks, recreation and environment in Bristol. Burke has spearheaded efforts to beautify and improve the water quality at Bristol Town Beach, where swimming was permitted every day last summer unlike some other Narragansett Bay beaches that had to be closed because high bacteria counts. He received the Save The Bay 2014 Environmental Award in recognition of that accomplishment. The director is a former member of the Burke Family Singers, which performed throughout the world between 1959 and 1972 and appeared on several television shows. In addition, Burke has been cited for helping to restore the Silver Creek estuary in Bristol and for his leadership skills. Another accomplishment was convincing the Army to turn over the former Army Reserve building at the entrance of Colt State Park to Bristol so it can be renovated into a community center and recreation department offices. The Bankers Life regional office, which co-sponsors the salute program with “Senior Digest,” is located at 275 West Natick Road and can be reached at (401) 732-5213.

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