The Parting of a Wonderful Man of God

I received some very sad news today. For many of us, we lost a part of our religious life, our religious past on Sunday, June 29th. Father Robert Turner was called by our Heavenly Father to be with Him in heaven.

I was an altar boy when Fr. Turner arrived at Holy Name Parish in July, 1963. I remember serving early morning weekday Masses with Fr. Turner, and that he was always smiling a happy, even at 6 a.m. Mass. Like Fr, Shaughnessy, Fr. Turner would always make I was scheduled to serve Mass with him on All Saints Day. He too, would make sure he mentioned that I was born on that day, and that I was special as a result.

Fr. Turner will always hold a special place in my heart. He came to our home on Thomas Street the night that my mother had the heart attack that took her from us. I wasn’t in my parent’s bedroom when Fr. Turner gave the Last Rites to my mother, but I remember my dad saying how much Fr. Turner was able to provide comfort during such a heartbreaking tragedy. I’m sure Mom was one of the first in line to welcome Fr. Turner to the Kingdom of Heaven.


1931 – 2014

Fr. Turner

FATHER ROBERT TURNER of Munhall, died on June 29, 2014, age 83. 

Father Robert Turner was born on February 12, 1931 in Pittsburgh, PA to Joseph and Elizabeth Turner.  He attended St. Peter School and St. Michael High School, both on the South Side.  He earned a bachelor’s degree in 1959 from St. Vincent College in Latrobe, PA.

Father Turner was ordained on May 30, 1959 by Bishop John Wright at St. Paul Cathedral on Oakland, PA.  He celebrated his first Mass at St. Peter Church, his home parish. His first assignment as parochial vicar was at St. Basil Parish in Carrick, PA where he served from June 1959 to July 1962.  He then moved on the serve as parochial vicar for Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish in Bellevue (July 1962-July 1963), Holy Name Parish in Duquesne (July 1963-June 1966), St. Agatha Parish in Bridgeville (June 1966-May 1972), St. Paulinus Parish in Clairton (May 1972-September 1972), St. Scholastica Parish in Aspinwall (September 1972-November 1974). He was named pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Duquesne in November of 1974, where he served as pastor for 20 years until February 1994.  He then was named pastor of Resurrection Parish in February 1994 and served as pastor there until his retirement in June of 2006.

Although retired, Fr. Turner remained very active in both St. Maximilian Koble Parish in Homestead and Holy Angel Parish in Hays, offering weekday and Sunday Mass as well as confessions.  On May 30, 2014, Fr. Turner celebrated 55 years of being ordained in the Holy Priesthood.  A Mass honoring him was held on Saturday June 28, 2014 at St. Maximilian Kolbe Church. Some of Fr. Turner’s most memorable aspects of his ministry were taking care of the elderly, hearing confessions and administering the Eucharist.

Fr. Turner is survived by his sister Theresa (Robert) Whelan of Boston, MA and his brother Paul (Mary) Turner of Pittsburgh, PA.  He was predeceased by his siblings Joseph Turner, Clara Miehl, Charles Turner and Loretta Turner.  He is also survived by several nieces and nephews as well as many friends.  A visitation will be held on Wednesday 2-4 PM at the SAVOLSKIS-WASIK-GLENN FUNERAL HOME INC., 3501 Main Street, Munhall, PA.  Translation service will be Wednesday, 7 PM at Resurrection Church, West Mifflin.  Visitation will be held in church Thursday 1 pm until the time of the Funeral Mass at 3 PM.  Burial will be private.  In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions may be made in Fr. Turner’s memory to a parish of your choice.

JesusChristWelcomingHomeaChristianiEternal rest, grant unto him O Lord

And let perpetual light shine upon him.

May he rest in peace.


May his soul and the souls of all the faithful departed,
Through the mercy of God,
Rest in peace.



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5 Responses to The Parting of a Wonderful Man of God

  1. Carl Kavish says:

    He made you forget that he was a priest. By that I mean he was just a really good human being and man. I brought my son, Maxx, to Duquesne just so Father Turner could Baptize him in 1990.
    I too was one of his alter boys. What a great guy! A man I will never forget.

  2. DAVID MARKS says:

    He was a good and faithful servant.

    If he had converted to Judaism or became a protestant before he died, would he go to heaven? I SAY YES

  3. Colleen Byrne Travis says:

    After I heard the news of his passing, I posted a picture of Father Turner and me. The picture was taken on the steps of Holy Name School on my eighth grade graduation day. He was a a good priest. I remember him having a great sense of humor. He occasionally visited our classrooms, asked a few questions and told a few CLEAN jokes. Of course, his visit ended with his blessing. What great memories, and how fortunate we were to have grown up in that era thanks to our parents and people like Father Turner. I saw him a few years ago. He remembered my mother and her bringing her home made baked goods to the rectory for the priests.

    Jim you have jerked a few tears, again — good tears. Keep it up!

    • Ken Denne (55) says:

      how I remember Fr. Turner… sermon..sore throat…no sermon..too sermon..However, he was a sincere, pious man…

  4. Bob Chermonitz says:

    He was a very good priest and a true man of God. Rest in peace, Father Turner. 🙏

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