Turner: ‘A ray of sunshine’Published 11:14am Friday, October 26, 2012 Updated 11:14am Friday, October 26, 2012
Claire Turner’s bright smile and laughter will be greatly missed. Hundreds of family, friends and classmates gathered Thursday to remember the life of the 11-year-old Ashby girl who died Monday, Oct. 22.
On Oct. 14, 2012, Claire and three of her siblings were involved in a tragic car accident near Spitzer Lake from which Claire sustained a traumatic brain injury.
The crowd attending the memorial at the Fergus Falls First Church of the Nazarene viewed an uplifting wall of photos and mementos of Claire’s life in the lobby, while the first strains of music started up inside. The church was filled to capacity with those honoring Claire.
As the Rev. Clay Mitchell spoke of understanding the loss of a child, sobs of her young classmates could be heard in the parish.
A bright seventh grader at Underwood School, Claire had many friends and interests. She loved to sing, dance, play volleyball and the oboe. Claire was recalled as one who would cheer up a friend who was sad, lonely or just needed a friend. Indeed, the radiant smile beaming from memorial photos brought light into the gathering.
Pastor Steve Hoffman said Claire’s favorite place to hang out was Inspiration Point Bible Camp. IPBC counselor Amy Rogness recalled “Clairisms,” funny sayings that didn’t necessarily make sense, but made people laugh anyway.
Claire Andraiah Turner was born on February 15, 2001, in Alexandria. The youngest of ten children, she was the ‘baby’ of the family, nicknamed Claire Bear. Born into the love and laughter of a large, close-knit household, Claire talked about her family often. She was proud to be the child that “looks most like my daddy.”
Claire’s dad, Scott Turner, would only spend a few months with his baby daughter before succumbing to cancer in December 2001. She was also preceded in death by her eldest brother Matthew.
She will be greatly missed by her friends and family, including eight brothers and sisters: Julia; Jay; Meredith; Neil; Morgan; Gabriel; Ross; and Philip, and her mother, Marla.
All of the people that stood up and spoke at the memorial mentioned Claire’s boundless joy, devotion to God and stunning smile.
Condolences to the Turner family may be sent to the Glende-Nilson Funeral Home in Ashby.
By Darla Ellingson