Family pays tribute to adventurous Dawn

WHEN Jean Walker remembers her daughter as a child, she is filled with images of a “confident” yet “quiet” child, who from a young age showed a gritty determination and independence.

WHEN Jean Walker remembers her daughter as a child, she is filled with images of a “confident” yet “quiet” child, who from a young age showed a gritty determination and independence.

Born in Lowestoft, Dawn moved with her family first down to Essex and then to Lawshall, between Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury, and then to Bury St Edmunds.

Dawn was the eldest of three sisters, her younger sisters being Sheena and Kirsty, all of whom were brought up single-handedly by their loving and supportive mother, Jean.

Describing Dawn when she was young, Mrs Walker said: “She was a quiet little girl. Not in a silent way, but in a contented 'walking down the street happily talking to herself' way.”


You may also want to watch:


Dawn's sister Kirsty has similar memories. She was a calm and level-headed older sister who nearly always walked away from confrontation. Pushed too far however, and Dawn's inner-strength would come to the fore and leave those who tried to start an argument with her wishing they hadn't.

This, Kirsty said, was all part and parcel of the confident, self-assured young woman whom Dawn Walker became.

Most Read

“She was always so independent and wanted to get on and do her own thing,” said Jean, her mother.

Travel was a key passion for Dawn, who journeyed to Jamaica, Cuba, Egypt, Turkey, Greece and numerous other destinations.

Many people, according to Kirsty, were at least a little envious of Dawn, who went to King Edward VI School in Bury, and her adventurous, free-spirited approach to life.

As her friends began to settle down and have children, Dawn - who had been through two long-term relationships before encountering Nunn - threw herself into her own pursuits.

Mrs Walker told how her daughter had lived life to the full and still had a full life ahead of her when she was killed.

From her earliest days, it was clear Dawn Walker was never going to be a couch potato.

For many, including Kirsty, Dawn was an inspiration and an example of how a life should be led.

She rock-climbed, rode horses, spent hours beneath the waves with a scuba unit, ran and worked out regularly.

Photographs of Dawn reveal a fit, slim and athletic woman.

“When she got dressed to go out, she looked absolutely stunning. She looked immaculate - I wish I'd have looked like that,” said her Kirsty.

Dawn was on first name terms with staff and friends at her local gymnasium, the Swallow Suffolk Hotel, where she had been a member for more than three years.

Shortly after Dawn's death, leisure centre manager Maxine Steel said: “We all knew her because she used to come here often. She was very fit and had been coming here at least three years.

“She knew us all by our first names and would always have time for a chat. She was just normal and a really nice person.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter