Turner Station community leader Walker dies at 75
Wednesday, 23 January 2013 13:06
by John G. Bailey

    Longtime Turner Station resident and community leader Sam Walker died Jan. 10 at his home from complications of diabetes. He was 75.  
    Known as “Ice Pond” to his friends, he lived at Turner Station Park for 17 years as an attendant with Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks [BCDRP].
    Fellow Turner Station volunteer Gloria Nelson got to know him well in this capacity.
    “He made sure no one disrespected the park,” she recalled. “He made himself known to all park visitors and there was never any drinking or loitering. You couldn’t help but respect him.”
    Under Walker’s supervision, the park was a favorite site for boaters.
    “It’s the best kept secret around,” Nelson recalled a boater from Anne Arundel County saying. “If you launched a boat there, you didn’t have to worry about vandalism. The place was safe because of Sam.”  
    Mr. Walker also helped organize several community events, including the opening of the
Sollers Point Multi-Purpose Center in 2011 and  the annual May Day parades.   
   No lone wolf, Nelson noted his personal relationship with elected officials and other community leaders in his efforts to make Turner Station and the surrounding communities better places to live.
    Prior to employment at BCDRP, he worked  at Bethlehem Steel and Maryland Dry Dock for 32 years.
    Longtime friend Willy Marshall summed up his work history in this way: “He did everything.”
    Walker served on the Baltimore County Human Relations Commission for 19 years. As a volunteer at Alliance, Inc. he trained disabled clients to work on machinery and prepared and delivered food to county prisoners. According to Marshall, his favorite job was as an election judge, where  he received and secured voting machines on election days.
    Other jobs included night manager at the former Zu nightclub on German Hill Road for 17 years and owning his own lawn maintenance business.
    “He was a likable guy who would do anything for anybody,” Marshall explained. “He just enjoyed life and enjoyed people .... Sam did it his way. He loved the limelight and liked to dress up a lot.”    
    Walker was a longtime member of the Precinct 12 Police Community Relations Council, an open forum  for bringing community problems to the attention of the police. In 2012, the council recognized him with its Continuous Service to the Community award.
    He and Ofc. Warren Fluck, a member of the department’s community outreach team for Dundalk, had known each other since 2000.
    “We met at least once a week,” Fluck said. “He was very personable with me and others. He was a very athletic man and never slowed down. I could always count on him to help out at events.”    
    “He was a regular in later years at the 7-Eleven store on Dunmanway where oldtimers meet,” Fluck recalled.
    Nelson remembered seeing Walker with a cane earlier in the fall. “I turned to someone I was with and said, ‘If something happened to Sam, what would we do?’”
    “He is irreplaceable. I was privileged to know him,” Nelson declared.
    His wife Darlene and stepchildren Robin, Cindy and Sammy survive him.
    A son died in infancy.
    A memorial service was held at Shiloh Baptist Church in Edgemere, where he was baptized in 2012.