A very sad day for Manx athletics and fell running in particular with the news that Manx Fell Runners Life Member Walter Kennaugh has passed away peacefully this morning at Abbotsfield Ballasalla at the age of 94 years.
Walter became timekeeper and committee member for MFR or Manx Mountain Marathon Organisation as it was then known in the early 1980`s and for over 20 years was an absolute rock in the organisation. The successful sport we enjoy these days was founded on the base that Walter and the legendary Arthur Jones, a life long friend of Walter, laid down for us.
A very good soccer player in his day, Walter went on to be a successful referee before entering into the world of athletics as a result of his close friendship with Margaret Lockley who at the time was one of the UK`S finest marathon runners. Thankfully for us Walter took a shine to our branch of the sport and was a mainstay in fell running for many years impressing everyone with his integrity and friendliness.
I, personally, thoroughly enjoyed working with Walter over a long period of time and I had a great respect for him. It would be easy to write many words in praise of Walter, all of which he would have deserved, but he was a private man who hated any fuss, especially if he was involved. So to finish, on behalf of Manx Fell Runners I would just like to say thank you Walter for you tireless work for our sport and more importantly for your friendship.
Our thoughts go out to his family Barbra, Doreen, Geoff and Tony and of course grandson Steven.
Words by Richie Stevenson