Bernard (Bernie) L. Turner 1930 - 2024

Bernard L. Turner died June 28, 2024, with his family by his side, in McMinnville, Oregon. Bernie was born December 29, 1930, in Clay Center, Kansas. He was the son of Mable and Azel Turner and was raised on a dairy farm. He attended a one-room schoolhouse. He graduated high school at the age of 16, and went on to Ottawa University in Ottawa, Kansas. There he majored in English and met the love of his life, Rosalind (Griffeth) Turner. They were married in their senior year of college on January 27, 1952. Rosalind preceded him in death in December of 2022. After college, the Turners moved to Berkeley, California, where he attended seminary at Berkeley Baptist Divinity School. After seminary, he became a pastor at Gregory Heights Baptist Church in Burien, Washington, and later moved on to Good Shepherd Baptist in Lynnwood, Washington.

In 1970, the Turner family moved to McMinnville, Oregon, where he was Senior Pastor for 22 years at First Baptist Church in McMinnville. Moving to Oregon, Bernie found time to go back to his roots and was part owner of a farm, raising goats and rabbits. He lived out Christ’s mission: caring for the poor, the oppressed, the homeless, the lonely, and those searching for belonging in their lives. One of his missions in the 1980s became the welcoming and affirming of all people into God’s embrace, including the homosexual community.

After his retirement in 1992, Bernie and Roz enjoyed traveling throughout the U.S. and Europe with their many close friends. In retirement, Bernie found new ways of giving back to his community and founded the Yamhill County Habitat for Humanity. He built homes, organized and raised funds to house those with inadequate housing in our community. He also was on the Linfield Board of Trustees for many years. Throughout his life, he and Rosalind became involved in many social causes supporting peace organizations, the building of schools, funding the library, supporting education and giving back to the less fortunate.

Bernie was known by his children, Stanton Turner (Nancy), Diane (Turner) Rice, and Linda (Turner) Baker (Bill), as a loving dad with a great sense of humor, devoted to being involved in their lives and then in the lives of his grandchildren, Stacey and Justin Rice, Nathan and Emilee (Wick) Baker, and Andrew and Kristopher Turner. In addition to his six grandchildren, he leaves behind his seven great-grandchildren, Avery Rice, Tatum and McKenzie Baker, Parker, Eliza and Rowan Wick, and Grayson and Noelle Turner.

Services will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, August 10, at First Baptist Church in McMinnville. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Yamhill County Habitat for Humanity.

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