Darlene Turner (Davis)
The last of the Sheridan and Clara Davis siblings has passed. Darlene D. Turner, born June 7, 1936, went to be with her Lord and Savior on December 21st, 2017. Graveside services will be held on Thursday, December 28th at 2:00 p.m. at Portales Cemetery with Ken Broad officiating. A special viewing for Darlene will be held that morning from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon at Wheeler Mortuary in Portales.
Delivered by Dr. Hensley, Darlene (affectionately referred to as “Dar” by her family) was born in the old Portales hospital located at 4th Street and Avenue A at a time when life was much simpler. She proudly grew up on the family block located “across the tracks” with her father’s company, Davis Pump Company (now R.G. Lath & Plaster), as its centerpiece. With PHS diploma in hand, Darlene went on to obtain her bachelor’s and then master’s degrees from Eastern New Mexico University as an Education major.
Along the way, Dar met and married Robert “Bobby” Turner, a ruggedly handsome gentleman with an easy-going spirit who adored her. Since they were unable to have children of their own, the couple chose to fill their home with the kids they coveted in other ways. They “took in” Dar’s great nephew, Jimmy Wayne, and raised him as their own. Not stopping there, Bob and Dar formally adopted Robbie as a baby, and later, twins Sue and Jean. Their house was full.
Tragedy struck when Bobby perished from a heart attack while in his thirties leaving Dar to make a home for all. Armed with a strong will and patience and determination, she succeeded in the enormous task of providing for her family on a solo basis.
Throughout her 81 years, Dar did indeed live a life full of love and laughter surrounded by her beloved family members and many children.
With a heart as big as the State of Texas, she served as special education teacher for most of her professional life holding positions in the Grady, Elida and Fort Sumner public schools. She told countless stories of her interactions with developmentally challenged children and of the ways she was able to help the unteachable learn to read and do math. It was evident that Dar clearly loved her students by the fond manner in which she spoke of them.
All of her family will tell you that she didn’t have a “mean bone” in her body. She was fiercely loyal and devoted to family. And, Darlene was a story-teller. We will miss her incessant stories about our ancestors. Dar was an expert using “Ancestry.com”. For instance, she traced her mother’s people back to European royals whose names we readily recognize today.
This is not a sad ending to Dar’s story, however. Her legacy will continue in the lives of those she touched and in the stories told by her that will surely be carried on down for generations to come. We were blessed by her.
Dar’s family wishes to extend our love and sincere thanks to Heartland Continuing Care in Portales. Our beloved mother, grandmother and aunt cherished her time there as a direct result of the excellent care provided by staff members.
Darlene was preceded in death by her parents, Sheridan and Clara Davis; husband, Bobby; son, Robbie; grandson, Michael Ray Burns; brothers Frank, Jesse and S.J. Davis; and, sisters Oleta Stewart, Juanita Putnam and Othelle Usrey.
She is survived by daughters Jean Russell (Terry) and Sue Mosby (Terry), and the following grandchildren: Jonathan Turner, Keith Grass, Catherine Grass, Kylie Grass, Caleb Grass, Rebecca Burton, Kimberly Russell, T.J. Russell, and also, Zachery, Matthew, Savannah, Makayla and Jacob Mosby. She is survived by a great granddaughter, Michelle Russell, as well as many nieces and nephews including Linda Long, Rick Usrey, Sandi Bergman, Jackie Pearson, Jimmy Wayne Pearson and Junior Davis to name a few.