American Veteran 04

Don Edward Turner

May 17, 1932 ~ September 17, 2020 (age 88)

Obituary Image


Don Edward Turner was born May 17, 1932 in Houston, Kentucky.  He passed away September 17, 2020 at Discovery Care Centre in Hamilton, MT.

Don earned both a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree from the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ.  Upon graduation, he joined the Air Force, became a navigator and flew in the F-101 Voodoo.  In 1963, while flying low over rural California, the plane began to pitch up.  The pilot tried to save the plane and chose not to eject.  Don made the difficult choice of ejecting over low terrain.  The parachute barely had time to open, and Don swung into the ground like a pendulum, breaking his arm in several places.  He was invited to write an article for the Air Force publication because of his quick thinking and decisiveness.

Later, after leaving the Air Force, Don worked as a realtor in Arizona and Montana.  Don was married to Merry K. (Mattson) Turner for 43 years.  Merry K. passed away in June 2014.  Don loved and missed Merry K. very much.  Don is survived by his sisters, Treva Turner of Ooltewah, Chattanooga, TN and Paula Hefkens of Tucson, AZ; his daughter, Lisa Turner of Tucson, AZ; his stepdaughters, Randi Holland of Wilmington, MA., Cindi Woods of Dunnellon, FL., and Nanci Gutierrez of Colorado Springs, CO. as well as many grandchildren and great grandchildren; his nephew, David (Sandy) Hefkins and niece, Holly Hefkens all of Tucson, AZ; several cousins including Bruce Hume and his wife Rosemary of Indianapolis, IN.

Don had an adroit sense of humor that often caught people off guard.  He could be gruff but usually won people over with his sense of humor.

His family is very grateful to Discovery Care Centre of Hamilton whose caring staff extended his life by many years.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, September 23, 2020 at the Daly-Leach Chapel in Hamilton with Chaplain Paul Anderson officiating.  A graveside with military honors will follow at Riverview Cemetery in Hamilton. 

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Don Edward Turner, please visit our floral store.


Funeral Service
September 23, 2020

11:00 AM
Daly - Leach Chapel (Hamilton, MT)

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