The mother of Anthony Walker, who was murdered in a racist attack in Liverpool aged 18, has called racism a ‘disease’ which causes ‘pain and suffering’.
Gee Walker, appeared on Good Morning Britain from her Merseyside home to speak about BBC One film Anthony which will document how the devout Christian was brutally killed on 29th July 2005 in Huyton.
The mother, who was directly involved in making the drama, told how Anthony was ‘the son every mother dreamed of’ and called the teenager ‘the epitome of goodness’.
She then urged viewers to watch the 90-minute film, which envisages the life he could have lived, with an ‘open heart’ and told how it will detail ‘moments of racism’ encountered by Anthony throughout his life.
Speaking of the film, Gee said: ‘It has been in the making for two years, but things happen, Covid and George Floyd and I just hope people watch it with an open heart.
‘There are moments of racism throughout, so welcome to the school of Anthony Walker.
‘Hopefully people will act, because we’ve talked for years and years and we’ve done nothing, and we can evoke a conversation and people will start acting.
‘Racism is a disease and it’s taking out our children and causing us pain and suffering.’
Anthony was a Liverpool teenager with a devout Christian faith and a love of basketball.
Known to his family and friends for his humour, intelligence and compassion, Anthony was halfway through college with dreams of visiting America and studying law at university.
Gee called her son ‘every mother’s dream’ and hailed the ‘caring and sensitive’ teen, who was ‘wise beyond his years’.
‘I often say he was the epitome of goodness. Every mother’s dream,’ said Gee. ‘When I carried him, I dreamed of having a caring and sensitive boy and I got all of that. He was wise beyond his years. The son every mother would have wanted.’
He was slain with an ice axe after he walked away from thugs shouting racist abuse in the Huyton area of Merseyside in 2005.
Paul Taylor, 20, was sentenced to at least 23 years in jail – he is the cousin of Manchester City midfielder Joey Barton.
Michael Barton, the brother of Barton, was sentenced to 17 years and eight months for the murder.
Speaking of the incident, Gee said: ‘In brief, they were walking to the bus stop to catch a bus and started to get racially abused from across the road.
‘Being Anthony, caring and protective, he said “Let’s walk away and go to the next bus stop” And they drove ahead and waited for him and took him out’.
The film was made by award-winning screenwriterJimmy McGovern, from Liverpool, following in-depth conversations with Gee, about the boy Anthony was and the man it was hoped he would become.
Anthony will be played by Toheeb Jimoh, and Gee explained that after the read-through for the show, she knew the actor was the right person to portray her son.
She said: ‘He captured Anthony’s character so well, because he can be humorous and also serious.
‘When I met Toheeb, I knew he was the one. He reached out to me as Anthony would, because we are a huggy family, so I knew the deal was sealed.’