PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — On April 8, 2020, Curtis Walton was walking down Columbia Street in Portsmouth, the street he grew up on, when he was murdered.

“I always say that he was the biggest heart of selfless love and compassion and kindness that I know,” said his sister Cheryl Walton.

According to Portsmouth police, it was an attempted robbery of an innocent man. With no arrest, it’s now become what’s known as a cold case.

“My son was a traveler and he was around the world and he believed that no matter where he went, whether it was local or abroad, he just wanted to empower someone else so they could take what they have learned and to empower someone else,” said his mother, Bonnie Walton.

She described her son Curtis as a man of God, an esteemed attorney who served his country, and a community leader. He cleaned up the aftermath of a tornado that hit Driver (in Suffolk in 2008). In his honor, the non-profit organization Curtis Walton Empowers was set up to empower others to achieve their dreams.

The non-profit’s first mission was to provide a Ugandan family with a water tank that when full stores up to 132 gallons of rainwater.

“Their greatest need now was to have a water tank that would allow them to have clean, fresh rainwater,” Bonnie Walton said. “Once that tank would be filled it would provide them with a three-month supply of fresh rainwater as opposed to going miles to get that water.”

It’s all about continuing Curtis Walton’s legacy of compassion.

“It is just very humbling to know that we are able to make a difference in not just one life, but the life of a family and the life of a community,” said Curtis’ sister, Cheryl Walton. “I know he is looking down and he is very proud of helping others, that is just who he is.”

Empowering others to accomplish their dreams is what Curtis Walton was all about. You can contribute to the Curtis Walton Empowers account at any Bayport Credit Union. Checks can be made payable to Curtis Walton Empowers and mailed to P.O. Box 50102 Portsmouth, VA 23703. 

You can also contact them at CWEMPOWERS2020@GMAIL.com.