Special patch produced to remember Norwich Star Wars club founder

Chewbacca and Richard Walker. PIC: Supplied by Lee Nelson.

Chewbacca and Richard Walker. PIC: Supplied by Lee Nelson. - Credit: Archant

The force is with him always.

The Richard Walker Memorial Patch (left) and (right) with a picture of Mr Walker and Mark Hamill (Lu

The Richard Walker Memorial Patch (left) and (right) with a picture of Mr Walker and Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) in the middle. PIC: Supplied by Lee Nelson - Credit: Archant

And now to ensure the late Richard Walker, co-founder and president of the Norwich Star Wars Club UK, is always remembered the club have released a special memorial patch.

The patch, which can be sewn onto clothing, is in honour of the 69-year-old who died in September last year following a battle with prostate cancer.

Mr Walker, formerly of Mile Cross, helped unite Star Wars fans through the club, which has raised thousands of pounds for charities since it was founded more than 20 years ago.

He also founded his worldwide Star Wars Flag of Friendship, which was later endorsed by the franchise’s creator George Lucas.

The Richard Walker memorial patch has been produced to raise money for Priscilla Bacon Lodge, a Norfolk hospice which is hoping to open a state-of-the-art palliative care unit next to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

Mr Walker’s son-in-law Lee Nelson, 43, said the club had received an “overwhelming response” to the memorial patch, with orders placed from “all over the world”.

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He said: “We’ve sent them to Japan, America, Canada, South America - they’ve literally gone to all four corners of the globe.

“He met a lot of people with the club through which he started the worldwide flag of friendship. Once we produced it we were just bombarded with messages. Richard was a character. He’s such a big loss.”

The plan had been to release the patch when the club attended a Star Wars Celebration event to be held in LA in August but they have been released online after the event was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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The patch for Mr Walker, the brainchild of club chairman David Pye, together with another club patch, costs £10, with most of the proceeds going to Priscilla Bacon Lodge.

Mr Nelson said the club hoped to raise £1,000 through the badge sales, which would enable them to put Mr Walker’s name on one of the bricks at the new palliative care centre,

The badge features Chewbacca, a character that Mr Walker used to dress up as at events, and Star Wars actors who have died, including Alec Guinness (Obi-Wan Kenobi) and Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia).

Contact David Pye on 07931 217058.

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