‘My heart feels for his family’ – Sunderland soldier’s widow sends message of support

Richard Walker from Washington killed in action in Afganistan.

Richard Walker from Washington killed in action in Afganistan.

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A SOLDIER’S widow has spoken of her sadness after hearing of the latest Wearside casualty of war.

Lorna Roney, 24, said she had been left “saddened and shocked” at the death of Washington Sapper Richard Walker, killed last week by a rogue member of the Afghan National Army.

Mrs Roney’s husband, L/Cpl Christopher Roney, was killed in 2009 when two US Apache helicopters attacked a British base in Afghanistan.

The 23-year-old, from Sunderland, was serving in Sangin, Helmand, with the 3rd Battalion The Rifles.

Mrs Roney, of Witherwack, said: “When I heard about what happened, my heart went out to them.

“I just hope all the family stick together and give each other as much support as possible, that’s what we all did.”

Lorna, whose son William is now three, said hearing about Sapper Walker’s death brought back a lot of memories.

Members of Richard’s family were today due to attend RAF Brize Norton, in Oxfordshire, where the body of the 23-year-old was being returned home.

The young soldier, a big SAFC fan, was working on a construction task with other military engineers from his troop when the rogue officer began firing.

The former Washington School pupil had joined the Army in 2008, and was based in Hameln in Germany.

He was killed six months into his first tour of Afghanistan.

His mum, Kathryn Walker, 46, of Blackfell, Washington, said: “Richard held two things close to his heart — his daughter and his colleagues in the Army.”

Michael was just weeks away from being reunited with daughter Lilly-Faith, who will turn two in April.

A repatriation service was due to take place at RAF Brize Norton at 2.30pm today.

Twitter: @sunderlandecho