Exmouth Marine’s family pay tribute to ‘hero’
PUBLISHED: 15:15 21 June 2010
The funeral of a 42-year-old Exmouth Royal Marine killed in action in Afghanistan was held last Thursday.
Corporal Stephen ‘Whisky’ Walker’s funeral service was held at St Kenneth’s Parish Church, Kennoway, Fife, and he was laid to rest at Kennoway Cemetery.
His wife, Leona Walker, told mourners of the family’s loss of a ‘hero’, while colleagues paid tribute to his energy, praising his ‘utterly infectious determination’.
Paying tribute to her husband, Mrs Walker said: “His death will affect people’s lives for a long time, some for a lifetime.
“But personally at 9am on Friday May 21 2010 my heart was broken with the unbelievable gut-wrenching news of Stephen’s untimely death.
“It will live with me for the rest of my life, and my heart will stay broken.”
The commander of A Company Chris Paton said he remembered a feeling of ‘awe’ at Cpl Walker’s respectful and professional manner, incredible enthusiasm and infectious determination.
He said: “It seemed to defy the laws of chaos that so much positive energy, dynamism and utter drive could mange to be contained in one man’s body.
“My life, both personal and professional, has been enriched through meeting and knowing him.”
Scores of friends and relatives packed the church and the streets were lined with people as the cortege made its way to the service.
James Blunt’s song Goodbye My Lover was played as Cpl Walker’s coffin was carried into the church.
A statement from the hero’s son, Samuel, was read out by The Rev Richard Baxter.
It said: “My dad had such a big personality. He was always upbeat. He was so passionate about his work, his beliefs, but most of all his family and that’s why I loved him.”
Daughter Greer said: “My daddy was brave. He was my hero. He was the most funniest man in the world.”
The dad-of-two was killed last month in an explosion while on foot patrol with the Afghan Army in Sangin, Helmand.
Tributes to Cpl Walker’s selfless bravery and dedication were paid in the House of Commons.
Cpl Walker was originally from Lisburn, Northern Ireland.