Thomas G. Walters, 80, a rural letter carrier who went on to become president of two government employee organizations, died Friday after a long illness.

After moving here in 1943 from Toccoa, Ga., Mr. Walters was elected president of the National World Letter Carriers Association. In 1968, he was elected president of the Association of Retired Federal Employees.

Mr. Walters was born in Franklin County, Ga., and educated at the Gibson-Mercer Academy and the University of Georgia. He had worked during that time as a letter carrier. After serving in the Army, he was elected superintendent of schools in Stephens County, Ga.

In 1948, Mr. Walters was appointed director of the Government Employees Council here, which represented public employee unions.

In 1958, he was appointed to the staff of the Civil Service Commission where he was instrumental in developing the federal employees health benefits program. Mr. Walters also served as a key link between the federal employees union and the Civil Service Commission.

Mr. Walters retired from federal service in 1966, and was appointed legislative director of the American Federation of Government Employees.

Mr. Walters was a member of the American Legion and a decon at the Chevy Chase Baptist Church.

He is survived by his wife, Jerrie, of the home in the Chevy Chase section of Washington, two sisters, Mrs. E. H. Thomas of Athens, Ga., and Mrs. Lat Ridgway, of Canton, Ga.