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Trooper memorial removed from interstate

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Trooper Walker memorial on Interstate 85 (PHOTO: Wayne Covil)

DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) – The roadside memorial erected near the site where Virginia State Master Trooper J.A. Walker was shot and killed is being removed from Interstate 85.

“The Walker Family and Virginia State Police would like to thank the Dinwiddie County community and many others from across the Commonwealth of Virginia and nation for their continued support after the tragic loss of Master Trooper Junius A. Walker,” Virginia State Police wrote in an email. “As we continue to mourn the loss of Master Trooper Walker, the Virginia State Police, with the blessing of the Walker Family, have relocated the meaningful tributes from Interstate 85 to the Walkers’ residence.”

Virginia State Police spokesman Sgt. Thomas Molnar said the items were removed for safety reasons. He said the items could distract drivers and people were still stopping to pay tribute to Walker.

He said police are working to erect an official state memorial sign at the site and asked anyone wishing to pay their respects to do so at the Virginia State Police Area 7 Office located at 25650 Simpson Road, Petersburg, Va.

Earlier this month Dinwiddie County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to rename the 13.5 mile stretch of I-85 between the Carson Road (Rt. 703) interchange to the Brunswick County line as “Master Trooper Junius A. Walker Memorial Highway.”

On March 7, the 63-year-old master trooper was shot and killed in the line of duty. Walker had stopped to help a driver pulled over on Interstate 85.

The driver, Russell Brown, is accused of killing Walker. A judge ordered Brown undergo a mental evaluation.