Widow speaks at vigil to honor slain trooper
By James Peacemaker, Jr., Managing Editor
Apr 8, 2013, 13:10
JAMES PEACEMAKER JR./HOPEWELL NEWS/NEWS-PATRIOT Betty Walker spoke briefly about her husband, Master Trooper Junius A. Walker at a candlelight vigil Thursday night at Smyrna Baptist Church in Dinwiddie.
DINWIDDIE — In her first time speaking publicly after her husband’s killing, the widow of Master Trooper Junius A. Walker said words cannot adequately express the family’s appreciation for the outpouring of support from the community.
Betty Walker spoke at a candlelight vigil Thursday night at Smyrna Baptist Church in Dinwiddie. Despite the rainy night, the pews were packed with area police officers, firefighters and those who wanted to pay their respects.
“Walker was not one to talk much about what he did on a daily basis. In fact, when I would ask him how his day was, he’d say ‘Fine.’ I asked him “What did you do today?” and he’d say ‘Nothing.’ Obviously he was minimizing what he did for the community in so many ways, and it’s only since his passing that we’ve come to realize that,” she said. “There’s a huge hole in our lives that will never be filled.”
PHOTOS BY JAMES PEACEMAKER JR./HOPEWELL NEWS/NEWS-PATRIOT Smyrna Baptist Church in Dinwiddie hosted a candlelight vigil to honor Master Trooper Junius A. Walker.
Walker, 63, was shot multiple times March 7 in Dinwiddie along Interstate 85 as he stopped to help what he likely thought was a stranded motorist. Russell E. Brown, 28, of Chesterfield, awaits trial and could face the death penalty.
In addition to his wife, Walker left behind two daughters, Vera (Jason) of Prince George, Va., and Clarissa (Joe) of Dinwiddie, and a son, Derrick of Sweden. He also had three young grandchildren.
Capt. Steve Chumley lights his candle off of Junius Walker’s widow, Betty.
At the vigil Thursday night, Capt. Steve Chumley, Walker’s supervisor in Area 7, which includes Dinwiddie, Prince George, Petersburg and Nottoway, spoke of Walker as a man who went out of his way to help people, something that ultimately led to his killing.
“He was helping someone, someone who he thought had broken down on the side of the road. It was time for him to get off, to go home. He was only about 3 miles from his house. Probably, there is many a law enforcement officer that if they were that close to going home would of bypassed that car and called it in for someone else to handle. But that wasn’t J. He stopped to help someone in need and ultimately gave his life while trying to help someone.”
Chumley said Walker took his oath knowing that he might have to make that sacrifice one day.
Police officers listen during the ceremony.
“Betty ... I hope you know by now that you are a part of our family for the rest of your life, all of you.”