Tuesday 6 December 2016

Funeral mourners of Keith Walker (36) hear: 'One week ago today Keith came face to face with pure evil'

Laura Larkin

Published 19/06/2015 | 11:45

The coffin is carried to The Church of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Rowlagh for the funeral mass of Keith Walker. Photo: Damien Eagers
The coffin is carried from The Church of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Rowlagh after the funeral mass of Keith Walker. Photo: Damien Eagers

AN innocent dad of two who was gunned down in a botched gang hit was remembered as "a wonderful family man" today.

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Mourners gathered to pay their respects to Keith Walker (36) at the Church of the Immacualte Heart of Mary in Rowlagh, Clondalkin.

Fr David Halpin described Mr Walker as "fine upstanding man" who always put his family first and gave of his time generously to referee schoolboy football matches at weekends.

Tragically Keith had just wed his teenage sweetheart Lorraine in a ceremony three weeks ago.

The pair were due to have wedding celebrations with family and friends in September.

During the service the couple were described as best friends.

The pair have two sons, Jake and Taylor Jack.

Taylor Jack, who Keith described as his miniature Michael Flatley, made his communion in the same church earlier this year.

Gifts left at the alter represented Mr Walker's love of football and pigeons.

A Liverpool scarf, a referee's jersey, a pigeon trophy and a pigeon whistle were laid at the alter during the service.

Young footballers lined stood outside the church as the hearse arrived lead by a bagpipe player.

In a moving eulogy Mr Walker was honoured as a "character" and a "big teddy bear" who was extremely proud of his two sons.

"He was always winding people up, that's how he bonded with you," his friend Gareth recalled.

Fr Halpin told the congregation that it was "unspeakable evil" that lead to Mr Walker's death.

"It's so wrong that a young man's life has been cut short by an act of such gross violence," he said.

"One week ago today Keith came face to face with pure evil," he added. 

"That evil also manifested itself in the so-called crime bosses who ordered the killing of the intended target."

Mr Walker was shot several times in Blanchardstown last Friday in what Gardai believe was a case of mistaken identity.

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