Cover photo for Howard Dean Turner, Jr.'s Obituary
Howard Dean Turner, Jr. Profile Photo
1948 Howard 2023

Howard Dean Turner, Jr.

March 2, 1948 — May 7, 2023

TSgt Howard Dean Turner, Jr., USAF (Ret.), of Columbia, MS passed away Sunday evening, May 7, 2023, at Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg, MS.  A memorial service will be announced at a later date.

Howard Dean Turner, Jr. was born on March 2, 1948 in Burns, OR to Howard Dean Turner, Sr. and Esther Ruth Denham Turner.  Mr. Turner graduated high school in Mobile, AL and enlisted in the United States Air Force, where he honorably served his country for 21 years, retiring as a Technical Sergeant. Prior to his retirement from the military, Dean would marry his beautiful bride,  Judith Fowler, and together, they would raise a loving family, to which 6 children, in-laws and a host of grandchildren and great-grandchildren would be added.  After his retirement from the Air Force, Mr. Turner enrolled in the University of Southern Mississippi and earned his Bachelor of Science degree.  His children remark that their father's true passion was serving as a counselor at Jolimar Recover Center.  For many years, Mr. Turner found fulfillment and purpose as he counseled and ministered to those that found themselves victims of alcohol and drug addiction.  In addition, he also touched many lives as a volunteer with Alcoholics Anonymous.  Mr. Turner will be remembered as one full of wit and possessing the gift of gab.  He was not only a jokester, but also had the talent of painting a picture with words.  He had the ability to transport his audience to the very setting of his tales, complete with details so vivid, it was sometimes difficult to know if the fun-loving stories were truth or fiction.  These stories have become family heirlooms of a sort and will be cherished...and retold for generations.  Mr. Turner, a huge fan of Alabama Crimson Tide football, also enjoyed hunting and fishing and was known as being quite savvy with electronics and mechanics. He was of the Baptist faith.

Mr. Turner was preceded in death by his parents Howard and Ruth Turner.

His memory will forever be cherished by his beloved wife of 39 years, Judy Turner of Columbia; 3 daughters, Tracy Renee Nottingham (Steve) of St. Augustine, FL, Dena Messina (Steve) of Greene, NY, Elinore Wadford (DJ) of Moncks Corner, SC; 3 sons, John Michael Turner of Groton, CT, Chris Stonier (Jody) of Summerville, SC, David Wesley Turner (Rebecca) of Sumrall and 2 brothers, David Turner of Mobile, AL and Wesley Turner of Atlanta, GA.  The legacy of their Grandpa Dean will also live on through his 12 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren.

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