Mabel W. (Williford) Turner
October 5, 1929 – June 22, 2020
On Monday, June 22, 2020, the last wish of Mabel W. Turner of San Antonio, TX, was finally granted as she was reunited with her beloved husband Hollis in Heaven. Mabel was 91 at the time of her passing, though even to the end she had nearly everyone believing she was only 90.
Mabel was born in Chaires, Florida, on October 5, 1928. Growing up in Florida, everyone said that she was quite the looker, and following WWII in Tallahassee she caught the eye of Hollis C. Turner, a WWII veteran who was working in the US Postal Service at the time. In the course of dating they discovered they shared the same birthday, though Hollis was 4 years older, and decided to marry on that same day in October of 1947. This made remembering each other's birthday and anniversary much easier. They hoped to have a child on the same day as well, but their son, Joseph "Gene" Turner, would thwart those plans by being born 10 days later the following year. Shortly after their son's birth Hollis was called back to active duty for the Korean War. While he served in the US Army, Mabel served as a nurse in the US Civil Service for the Army. In 1958 Mabel and son Gene moved to Germany with Hollis who remained on active duty following the Korean War. They moved and lived briefly in Alabama, finally settling in Newport News, Virginia with Hollis' posting to Fort Eustis.
There in Virginia Mabel continued to work as a civilian nurse for the Army where she developed a reputation as both an extraordinary nurse and compassionate healer with an iron will that could match even the most stubborn patient. While living there she was also able to be present for the birth of her grandson, Joseph E. Turner, Jr., and help in the early days of his life. Hollis retired that same year and went to work for the civil service while Mabel continued to work as a nurse. Eventually injury prevented her from being able to physically perform the duties of a nurse, at which point she retired and focused on her family and personal pursuits which ranged from sewing to learning to play the electric organ and hammered dulcimer. Nearly every summer was spent with visits from her son Gene and his family or to Florida to visit their extended families. Her patience as a nurse was put to good practice keeping her spoiled grandson in check while somehow still spoiling him.
Eventually Gene's family settled in San Antonio, TX with his own retirement from the Army. When Hollis retired from the civil service they decided to sell their home of many years in Virginia and move to San Antonio to be closer to the family in 1993. They settled in northwest San Antonio where they continued to remain an active and beloved part of their son's family. They also found friends and community within the church they regularly attended.
In time Hollis passed away in May of 2015. Though she missed him dearly, Mabel continued to stay devoted to her family and loved ones and remained among them, fighting and beating breast cancer twice during her life and overcoming other hardships to stay with us on this Earth. She said more than once that she wished to see Grandpa again but that the Lord must still want her here awhile longer. That or she was just too darn stubborn to know when to go.
Sadly, Mabel and her son, Gene, both fell victim to COVID-19. Gene was admitted to Methodist Hospital of San Antonio after testing positive with Mabel also testing positive and being admitted the following week. She passed away on June 22nd, 2020, with her son succumbing that same week on June 27th. She is survived by her grandson, Joseph E. Turner, Jr. and his wife Stephanie Turner of Austin, TX, and several cousins, nephews, and nieces that still live in and around Florida.
A Visitation will be held for both Mabel W. Turner and Gene Turner at Colonial Funeral Home on 625 Kitty Hawk Road in Universal City, Texas on Tuesday, 7 July 2020 beginning at 7:00pm. Please note that for those attending the Visitation you will be required to wear a mask and temperature measured before you may be admitted. A joint Interment Ceremony will be held on 8 July 2020 starting at 2:15pm at Ft. Sam Houston National Cemetery with full military honors for Gene and spouse interment given for Mabel who will be laid to rest with Hollis. While only immediate family and invitees will be allowed to attend, a Facebook feed will be made available for those who wish to observe. Attendees should also expect to wear masks for the ceremony. In lieu of flowers, please consider contributing to Americares, Heart to Heart International, or a local medical charity or non-profit that is working to aid those fighting COVID-19.
Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.colonialuniversal.com for the Turner family.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Mabel W. (Williford) Turner
July 5, 2020
Rest in peace Mable. Just learned today that your son, Gene, joined you in heaven only 5 days after your arrival. You raised a wonderful son, Gene. You will be missed.