Milford today mourns the loss of football and baseball coach and teacher Kenneth R. Walker, who died Friday days before his 61st birthday.
The Connecticut Post reported that Walker died in his sleep of an apparent heart attack. He would have been 61 on Wednesday. He is survived by his wife, Nancy, and their two children, Whitney and Garrett.
Under his coaching leadership, Foran won the Class M state football championship in 1994.
In a statement, the Milford Public Schools administration said Walker had an “illustrious” 37-year career with the school system, and taught for more than two decades at Foran High School, where he served as coach for the football, basketball and baseball teams.
"I regret to inform you of the tragic loss of Mr. Ken Walker, our beloved teacher, coach and friend to many. Mr. Walker has been a part of the school and Milford community for decades. Personally, Kenny was a friend and mentor to me for the past 18 years. On behalf of the Foran faculty and staff, I know you will join me in keeping Mr. Walker and his family in your thoughts during this difficult time. We will miss him dearly.” — John Barile, Principal of Foran High School (an excerpt of a message he sent to the community through the district's School Messenger system.
“Ken Walker was an outstanding person who excelled in all he did. As a teacher and a coach, he developed his students and athletes to their greatest potential. He had a great sense of humor, was generous to all, and helped all who knew him. His death is a great loss to our community, and an even greater loss to his wonderful family. We will miss him.” — Michael Cummings, Assistant Superintendent of Milford Public Schools and former Principal of Foran High School
“Ken was what I would describe as a gentle soul. He saw the best in everyone and absolutely loved working with kids. He was dedicated to what he did and always gave 100 percent. This is a huge loss for all of us.” — Clifford Bugyi, longtime colleague and friend.
Walker received his Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education from Central Connecticut State College in 1973, and a Master of Science Degree in Physical Education/Special Needs from Southern Connecticut State College in 1984.
The school district statement said: “An avid sports enthusiast, Mr. Walker was well known in athletic circles throughout the region, particularly as a coach of youth and high school football, basketball and baseball.”
Walker served as a coach at Milford High School and Jonathan Law High School as well as at Foran.
“He has mentored literally thousands of young people through his years in the district.”
Calling hours will be held at , 170 Broad Street, Milford, from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, and a funeral Mass is scheduled for Monday at 10:30 a.m. at St. Mary Church, 70 Gulf Street.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Coach Walker’s name to the Joseph A. Foran High School Scholarship Fund (add Coach Walker’s name on the check memo) at 80 Foran Road, Milford, CT 06460.