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Gordon Farquhar, BBC Sports News Correspondent
discusses Jack Walker's contribution to football on BBC Five Live
 real 14k

Former England and Blackburn legend Ronnie Clayton
talks to BBC Five Live's Allan Robb
 real 14k

Blackburn player Simon Garner
"A very sad day"
 real 14k

BBC Five Live's John Thorne
gathers reaction from Blackburn fans
 real 14k

Friday, 18 August, 2000, 11:40 GMT 12:40 UK
Football remembers Jack Walker
Jack Walker celebrates with Alan Shearer
Jack Walker celebrates with Alan Shearer
Sir Jack Walker endeared himself to every Blackburn Rovers fan when he vowed to bring the Premiership title to Ewood Park at all costs.

But he also earned the respect of all the players who came and went under his reign as Blackburn benefactor.

Former Rovers defender Tony Gale was one of the first to pay tribute to Walker follwing news of his death at the age of 71.

"He knew everyone right down to the bag man," Gale commented.

"His money made a big impact at the club, but he was a down to earth man who dearly supported Rovers
  Simon Garner

"Everyone interested him and Jack was known to everyone. He transformed the place into what it is today.

"The town and the club owe a great debt to him."

Rovers leading goalscorer Simon Garner believes Blackburn have not only lost their main financial benefactor, they have also lost one of their loyalist fans.

He said: "His money made a big impact at the club, but he was a down to earth man who dearly supported Rovers.

Simon Garner: Jack was a true fan
Simon Garner: Jack was a true fan

"He followed Rovers all his life and was a bread and butter fan who luckily had a lot of money. But to the fans, that didn't matter much. They loved Jack because he loved the club.

"People may say that Blackburn are finished without Jack, but he has set up trust funds to secure the future of the club. "Everyone appreciated what he did for the club and the players will play for him against Crewe on Saturday."

Fantastic servant

Walker's death also made a significant impact within the corridors of the Football Association.

"It is terrible news that Jack Walker has died," said FA spokesman Steve Double.

"He was a fantastic servant of the game and the achievements of Blackburn over the 90s are testament to the man.

"Without Jack Walker the club would not have reached the heights it did."

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See also:

18 Aug 00 |  Football
Blackburn Rovers owner dies
18 Aug 00 |  Football
Jack of the Rovers
18 Aug 00 |  Sports Talk
Your tributes to Jack Walker
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