Popular Melrose native, John Turner, 75, dies

... succumbs after fighting cancer for 11 years; from well-known family

by Jack Driscoll

Johnny Turner was known for his ever-present smile.
John F. Turner, Sr., of Melrose, died at home on April 25, 2013 at the age of 75. John was born and raised in Melrose and was a lifelong Melrose resident. He was a graduate of St. Mary's Grammar School, Malden Catholic High School, Class of 1956, and went on to earn his degree from Providence College, Class of 1960.

John was a Seafood Wholesaler & General Manager for Turner Fisheries of Boston before retiring at the age of 65. (He had succeeded his father, also of Melrose, who founded the company.) He was a lifelong member of St. Mary's Church and a former member of the Knights of Columbus, both in Melrose.

He was an avid sports fan and enjoyed spending his holidays with his family and
friends. John was a quiet man who was very grateful for his life and his family. His family would like to thank the doctors and nurses at Mass. General Hospital and the VNA hospice nurses for the incredible care he received while under treatment for cancer for 11 years.

John Turner (No. 16 in front row) starred for Providence College from 1957 to 1960 after an outstanding hockey career at Malden Catholic High School.

John was the beloved husband of Margaret M. (Willwerth) Turner for over 52 years. Caring son of the late James F. & Annie J. (Brennan) Turner of St. John's, Newfoundland. Loving father of James B. Turner & his wife Kathi of Gloucester, John F. Turner, Jr and his wife Cathy of Stowe, VT, Joseph A. Turner & his wife Sharon of Gloucester and Christopher R. Turner and his wife Shelby of Melrose. Devoted brother of Margaret Kelly and her late husband William of Melrose, Mary Ardagna and her late husband Anthony of Georgia, Ann Malenchini and her late husband Arthur of Wakefield and the late Helen Turner. Cherished grandfather of Samantha, Danielle, Alia, Olivia, Ginger, James, Mark, Rachel, Elaina, Alexa Rae and Madison. Also survived by many nieces, nephews and John's world of family & friends.

Funeral was from the Gately Funeral Home 79 W. Foster St., Melrose on Tuesday, April 30th at 8:45AM. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated in St. Mary's Church, Herbert St., Melrose at 10AM. Burial was in Wyoming Cemetery, Melrose.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in John's name to Cancer Research Fund for Dr. Zhu (Fund #211884) Mass. General Hospital Development office 165 Cambridge St., Ste. 600, Boston, MA 02114 or VNA of Middlesex-East Visiting Nurse Hospice, 607 North Ave., Ste. 17, Wakefield, MA 01880.

John Turner with sons in Gloucester.

Turner's Restaurant on Main Street in Melrose.

(Our thanks to the Gately Funeral Home for providing obituary material, to Turner Fisheries for two photographs and to Providence College Athletics for the hockey team photo from its archives.)

May 3, 2013

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