Regular programs from Richmond Channels ABC-8 and NBC-12 were preempted on March 12 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to air the funeral service of a fallen policeman who was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, March 7.
The funeral was for Master Trooper Junius "J.A." Walker at Good Shepherd Baptist Church in Petersburg, Virginia where more than 3,000 attended.
When Master Trooper stopped to check on a car that he believed to be abandoned on Interstate 85 in Dinwiddie County, 28-year-old Russell Brown III shot Trooper Walker multiple times.
The 63-year-old trooper had talked about retiring soon since he was in his 40th year of law enforcement. He became one of the first African-Americans in the Virginia State Police Department. He was sworn in on March 1, 1973, and he had been patrolling in Dinwiddie County for the last 29 years.
Trooper Walker is survived by his wife, Betty; two adult daughters, Vera, Clarissa, a son Derek, three grandchildren and his mother, Mary.
According to Channel 8 News, about 1,400 attended the wake on Monday evening including law enforcement from around the states such as from Ohio, Missouri and Indiana. Law enforcement officers have been wearing black armbands for the last several days in memory of Trooper Walker.
Governor Bob McDonnell began his remarks by quoting a scripture. He said:
"Greater love has no man than to lay down his life for his friends. That's what Trooper Walker did after taking the oath on March 1, 1973. He gave the ultimate sacrifice while trying to help people. He gave his life while attempting to help someone."
The eulogy was delivered by Rev. Herbert Anderson who focused on the theme of "Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled."
Based on the remarks from colleagues and others who spoke at the funeral, Trooper Walker was loved and respected by all.
A private burial was held in Brunswick County for family and friends.
"Rest in peace, Master Trooper Junius Alvin Walker."