Grandpa Walker on his Wedding Day, a man I never knew yet had a huge influence on me. A man of great courage, kindness and compassion. He was the Police Officer in charge of our town and his exploits are legend including arresting cop killers unarmed, who were later executed and arresting a Luftwaffe pilot who had bailed out. The papers described the German as an ardent Nazis, Papa however thought him a nice enough chap ! My favourites are the woman who lost her husband in the war, who as a result became an alcoholic. He refused to arrest her and instead got her home, by wheelbarrow, every week. The other concerns troops stationed in the area. There was always one or two ‘bad’ boys that needed to be locked up until they went to war. Sgt Walker let them out for a pint if they promised to return ! they always did.
Papa wasn’t into music as such but mum remembers he used to sing to his children, ditties and folk songs, this one ‘Joe the carrier’s lad’ is one she remembers he sang. Mum is now 87 and can remember every word of this song she last heard as a child.
I have but a single memory of the man I adored,
him in a hospital bed, the ward painted green.
I hid behind mum, shy and frightened,
but he caught my eye, grinned and winked.
I couldn’t close one eye, so smiled and blinked,
happy to have been seen.
Though I search the depths of my past ,
I cannot see his face, nor can I hear him speak.
I was so very young when one day they said
grandfather’s passed away, Papa’s dead,
and left me with answers to seek.
I never tired of the stories told,
about Sergeant Walker, brave and bold,
and I now tell them all to my son,
and of a little boy’s loss,
when his life had just begun.
I hope he would’ve been proud of me.