Memorial Service Reception on Flag Day

Memorial Service Reception on Flag Day

I spoke my piece at my father’s service and boy was it even harder to do than I thought.  To follow is my presentation and then the link to a Utube post of his Flag Presentation.

 Good afternoon, my name is Dru Turner and I am the first born child of Dr Kenneth Edward Turner; one of his four daughters, two sons, and six grandchildren; today I wish to tell you something of him.

Primum non nocere is a Latin phrase that is often translated as “First do no Harm” or “Above all do no Harm”.  It is part of The Hippocratic Oath sworn by all new physicians and it requires that physician to uphold a number of professional and ethical standards.  My father was above all, a physician. 

He was in private practice in this county for over 50 years starting when our family moved to Las Vegas in 1959. 

During his long professional career he delivered over 15,000 babies.  He was very proud of that fact and of his medical service to the communities of the Las Vegas area.

Born May 14th, 1924, in Tillamook, Oregon of pioneer Oregon families; Dr Ken Turner was the 4th child of 5 children and the only son of Ida Viola Turner and Boston Edward Turner. 

He was educated at Walla Walla College in Oregon where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Science in 1948.  He then graduated from Loma Linda University School of Medicine in 1952 where he received his Medical Degree.                   

Both of these degrees were obtained after he had served his Country with Honor in World War II.  He was a glider medic attached to the 17th Airborne Division in the European Theater of Operations and received a Purple Heart for wounds received in action in 1945.  He was proud of that service also.

After graduating from Medical School, he interned and had special training at Fort Worth, TX and the Army Medical Base in the Panama Canal Zone.  Following his time in Texas and Panama, he spent over 2 years in general practice in Truckee, CA before moving to Las Vegas to open his specialty practice.  During the winters in Truckee he sometimes had to snow shoe to make house calls and even delivered one child on a snowbound train near Donner Pass.

He opened his OB/GYN practice here in Las Vegas and maintained that practice for the next 5 decades; as my partner Vernon said, He was very dedicated and disciplined as his long private practice attested; he always went around with his phone in his hand because he was always on call. 

In his 54 years as a resident of Las Vegas and Henderson; he was very active in the medical and political communities of Las Vegas, Clark County, and the State of Nevada.  

He served as Chief of Staff for Southern Nevada Memorial Hospital and for Women’s Hospital.  He also served on the Executive Committees of both, what is now UMC, and Sunrise Hospital and was appointed vice president of the Nevada State Board of Medical Examiners. 

He served on the Board of Directors of the Nevada Medical Political Action Committee; served on the Medical Board of the March of Dimes and was on the Education Committee of the Clark County Medical Society.   

A few years ago he received the President’s Award from the Clark County Medical Society for his many contributions to Medicine and Medical Education.  While serving on their Education Committee, he spearheaded the creation and development of many medical education projects like the establishment of the first residency training program in Nevada. 

On the political front, he served on the Nevada Gaming Commission and was a ranking member of the Clark County Republican Central Committee.  In the 1960s he founded and was Chairman of Political Associates; as well as being Chairman of the Southern Nevada Citizens for Goldwater during the 1964 campaign; and was Chairman of the Richard Nixon Nominating Committee for Southern Nevada in 1968.  He was very active in all of Paul Laxault’s campaigns.              

He was extremely witty and funny; he had a great comedic sense of timing and could have been a standup comic.  He probably would have written most of his own material. 

He was a good teacher and a marvelous extemporaneous speaker.  He loved words, cross words, books, poetry and sometimes he even wrote poetry.  He was a great fan of Dorothy Parker and his favorite book was War and Peace.  He wrote his own obituary and his only request was that it be published exactly as he had written it.

My father was a proud man but also a humble man.  He was gentle and often kind but capable of great fierceness particularly when defending his ideals, ethics, and friends. 

He was very proud of his family; as we were and are, still proud of him. 

He is fondly remembered by all his family and his other family…his employees… especially Michelle who was like another daughter to him. 

I know his professional and political colleagues, his cohorts; his patients, and his community remember him too. 

He will be missed.

 The Family and I would like to let you all know that at the conclusion of today’s ceremony there will be a memorial reception at the Boulder Creek Golf Club Grill, which is about two miles away on Veteran’s Memorial Dr.  The reception begins at 1:30 pm and will be held in the Memorial Dining Room of the Club House.  Please feel free to attend, meet family and friends, and reminisce about:

 Dr Ken Turner

A Physician, Mentor, Politician, Teacher, Comic, Wit, Poet, Father, Grandfather, Brother, Husband, Soldier and Cook! 

Thank you

I’m glad it is over but I’m glad I participated so I am feeling better but “Uncle” is back in the hospital, so I guess it is never really over.

I rented a Fiat 500 to go to the service and that was just a kick….dru

FIAT 500

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