LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – A teenager’s life cut short has brought an outpouring of affection from the Kentucky National Guard.
Dillon Walker, who died in a mysterious shooting incident Saturday morning, was a volunteer in researching a memorial dedicated to guardsmen who died in the line of duty.
At the time, he was just a high school student but one who had used his senior project to spend hours finding and verifying the names of 60 National Guardsmen killed in the line of duty.
“Without his help, those 60 soldiers and airmen may not have gotten their names on the wall,” Kentucky National Guard Spokesman David Altom said.
Walker’s uncle, who died after being injured in the Iraq war, will also be on the wall. The 18-year-old’s dedication to the project impressed the Kentucky National Guard so much, that they made him an honorary member.
Altom says he doesn’t know what happened in the early Saturday morning hours when Walker was killed.
Police say they’re still investigating the circumstances but say Walker and his 17-year-old friend were playing with guns on Routt Road when the 17-year-old shot and killed Walker.
“The outpouring from our National Guard family has been very strong – a lot of shock, a lot of sadness,” Altom said.
Shocked because he felt the 2014 Western Hills High School grad was full of promise.
The aspiring pilot planned to major in aviation so he could see the world. He was to move into his Eastern Kentucky University dorm in a few days.
“When I met Dillon Walker, there was no doubt the world was going to be in good hands with him. I just hope when other people hear his story they are inspired,” Altom said.
Some members of the Kentucky National Guard plan to contribute to a memorial brick in Dillon Walker’s name to be added to the area National Guard Memorial when it is complete.
Officers have not confirmed as to why Walker and the 17-year-old were in Jefferson County.
Homicide is still investigating.