‘Come on in. Get a soda pop. Have a seat.”
Those were the words most people who entered Christopher Walker’s office at Walker’s Mortuary “Chapel of Peace,” on Johns Island heard.
Walker was remembered as being great at making people’s burden feel a little bit lighter, especially those who were bereaved.
“I miss his jokes, his smile and his laugh,” Latrada McCanick, his cousin and employee says. “He had a little quiet laugh. It was little with a smile and a little giggle. His laugh would make you laugh. He was my cousin, but I looked at him as a daddy figure, and he treated me like one of his children.”
Walker, who was born May 31, 1943, died Aug. 30. The founder of Walker’s Mortuary, he was known for buying cakes and sodas and delivering them to bereaved families, McCanick says.
He did that because he was a caring and family-oriented person.
Walker, who was born in the Sugar Hill community, was the kind of man who would make sure he introduced the younger generation to extended family members, McCanick says.
“He knew everything about our family’s history,” she says. “He would always explain who was who. We would be out and he would see somebody and say, ‘This is your grandmother’s cousin.’ He loved all of his family.”
John Brisbon, who is married to one of Walker’s cousins, worked beside him in the office and the field for 16 years.
“He was a real good person. If someone owed him money, he did not bug them. If they came in because another family member passed, he would still serve them. His whole idea was to maintain a comfortable living, but to help the families. It wasn’t about the money, it was about pleasing the family.
“He would also drive to another state and pick up a body to save the family some money. We used to go to Georgia and Florida, way down in Florida. We’ve gone as far away as Ft. Myers. Put down headstones, body removal, Mr. Walker and I would do it all. If somebody had a problem, if the grave was sinking we’d go and build it up.”
Lillie Walker says her husband always wanted the families he served to feel good about the way their loved ones’ bodies appeared when they were viewed.
“He would lay down at night thinking about the best way to present them, so the families would feel good,” she says. “Then, he would pick up at the hospitals and embalm another body in the middle of the night. Everybody would be in the bed asleep and he was still running around working.”
Walker did not have time for a hobby, she says. He relaxed by watching television and movies.
He liked “Judge Judy” and watched “Nancy Grace” and the news, too, but he seldom sat still.
When he did slow down and his family visited, he loved to cook, especially on the grill.
“He could cook anything,” she says. “I certainly miss his cooking. He loved to grill. He would grill fish and steak and chicken. He could cook beans, rice and he made a mean potato salad. I liked his chicken and okra soup.”
Reach Wevonneda Minis at 937-5705.