Tommy C. Turner
After braving years of illness, Tommy C. Turner, age 67, passed away on Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2019, at Hunt Regional Medical Center in Greenville. He was born on Oct. 1, 1952, in McAllen, TX, to William "Bill" and Vela (Fowler) Turner. Tommy graduated from Caddo Mills High School in 1971. He went on to graduate from his beloved Texas A&M University, College Station, with a Bachelor of Science degree (1974) and a Master of Education degree (1976). With his course set; his life's passion and devotion ensued, the betterment of Texas public schools and the protection of its children.
As a teacher and coach for Bland ISD in 1975, Tommy continued on this path by serving as principal for Como-Pickton ISD and later Superintendent for Miller Grove ISD until 2004. While at Miller Grove ISD, Tommy found himself in frequent battles with one particularly ornery teacher on his staff. He often stated, "I had to marry her, so I could win the occasional argument." And to that end, he was joined in marriage to Donna Bodiford Parker on July 24, 1992. Later, Tommy succumbed once again to his nagging wife and completed his dissertation and received a Doctorate of Education from East Texas State University in 1996.
Throughout his career, Tommy set goals for himself, and one that was paramount to him was securing new school buildings for Miller Grove. Long hours of writing grants and applying for government loans resulted in success, and allowed Tommy to avail himself of new opportunities.
In 2004, Tommy was named Deputy Executive Director of School Operations for Region VIII Service Center, and for the following ten years, he considered his work there a labor of love, often expressing how much joy his colleagues gave him. It was with great sadness, however, that his declining health forced him to retire in November 2014, after having served Texas public schools for 39 years.
Tommy is survived by his wife, Donna; sisters Paula and her husband, Randy Talley of Greenville; Carol and her husband, Freddie Dale of Caddo Mills, and Lynn Green of Rockwall, as well as a niece and several nephews. Honorary pallbearers are Harvey Hohenberger, Fred Moseley, Randy Talley, Freddie Dale, Benjie Talley and Bill Bodiford.
A memorial service in celebration of Tommy's life is set for Saturday, Oct. 19, at 10 a.m., at Coker-Mathews Funeral Home, 5100 I-30 East, Greenville, TX with Pastor Charles Moore officiating. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to a cause dear to Tommy:
Texas Civil Rights Project
1405 Montopolis Drive; Austin, TX
Published on October 16, 2019


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Nelda (Farmer) Sivernell
Oct 17, 2019
Tommy and I shared 12 years of education. He was fair and typically kind. When he was angry, if he had a cap in hand or close by him, he would throw it on the floor with an angry thud when things didn't go his way. I'm sure it wasn't easy for him having a father who was the principal of the Elementary School. I never saw Tommy asking for favors from his dad. And, having 3 younger sisters and no brothers to help him out must have been difficult. I never saw Tommy after we graduated, but heard pieces of information about him from classmates. The school districts he led were lucky to have him. I am so glad he found a wife to share his life. I am sure she will grieve her loss of a really good ma...n!Read more