England

Funeral for 40 Commando bomb blast Royal Marine

Cpl Stephen Walker
Image caption Cpl Walker's daughter Greer said he was the "funniest man in the world"

The family of a Royal Marine killed by a bomb blast in Afghanistan have paid a final tribute to their "hero".

Mourners gathered in Fife, Scotland, for the funeral of Cpl Stephen Walker of Taunton-based 40 Commando.

The 42-year-old father-of-two was on patrol with members of the Afghan Army when he was killed in Sangin, Helmand.

Originally from Lisburn, Cpl Walker lived in Exmouth, Devon, with his wife and daughter. He also leaves behind a son, Samuel.

Addressing mourners at St Kenneth's Parish Church in Kennoway, his wife Leona said the news which had broken her heart will stay with her forever.

Determination praised

"His death will affect people's lives for a long time, some for a lifetime," she said.

"But personally, at 9am on Friday May 21 2010, my heart was broken with the unbelievable and gut-wrenching news of Stephen's untimely death."

The Rev Richard Baxter read out a statement from Cpl Walker's son Samuel which said: "He was so passionate about his work, his beliefs, but most of all his family and that's why I loved him."

His daughter Greer said in a statement: "My daddy was brave - he was my hero.

"He was the most funniest man in the world."

Cpl Walker, whose nickname was Whisky, joined the Royal Navy in 1986 and transferred to the Royal Marines in 1990.

During his 20 years with the marines, he served in Northern Ireland, southern Turkey and Iraq before being sent to Afghanistan.

The commander of 'A' Company praised his energy and "utterly infectious determination".

Chris Paton said: "It seemed to defy the laws of chaos that so much positive energy, dynamism and utter drive could manage to be contained in one man's body."

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