Tributes paid to ‘our hero’ Harry Walker

Harry Walker
Harry Walker

Tributes have been paid to a much-loved World War II veteran who passed away aged 98.

Henry ‘Harry’ Townson Walker was president of Rugby No.1 branch of the Royal British Legion for many years and was well-known for selling poppies in the Clock Towers shopping centre. He died in St Cross hospital on August 17.

Harry married Connie in 1941 and they enjoyed 74 happy years together. They had a son Jon, daughter Marilynn and grandchildren Andy, Mark, and Jo.

During WWII Harry was a Battery Sergeant Major in the 151st Ayreshire yeomanry. Before being deployed to Europe, he trained American soldiers in Londonderry, Ireland.

He fought from D-Day, landing on a beach in Arromanches-Les-Bains in Normandy, all the way through France, Belgium, Holland and Germany as part of ‘Operation Market Garden’, finally being de-mobilised in Eckenforde, Northern Germany in 1946. He was in charge of a battery of eight 25lb field guns.

After the war Harry lived in various places around the country but finally settled in Rugby. He was awarded the long service award for giving so much of his time to the town’s Neighbourhood Watch.

Harry’s grandson, Andy, said he will be missed greatly.

“My grandad was an amazing man. A humble, incredible example of how to live a full, honest and worthwhile life.

“He had the courage to make a real difference to the world we live in but would never let himself be referred to as a hero. He was our hero and we’ll miss him greatly.”

Harry’s service will be held at St Mary’s Church in Clifton, on Wednesday September 2 at 2pm. There will be a guard of honour and an escort to the cemetery formed by the Rugby Army Cadets.

Family flowers only, charitable donations paid to Walton and Taylor funeral directors to be split between Harry’s chosen charities.