PDT Staff Writer
Long time New Boston Fire Chief and Village Councilman, Evan Elwood Turner, has died. Turner, 85, of New Boston died in his home Saturday morning. Turner, one of the best known citizens of New Boston, led an interesting life, much of it in service to the Village of New Boston.
In December 1950, Turner applied for a job at the New Boston Fire Department. He didn’t get the job, but was instead offered a job on the New Boston Police Department by Mayor Vern Riffe, Sr. Two weeks later (January 1951), another opening appeared at the fire department and Turner was moved there. He remained with the New Boston Fire Department until he retired as village fire chief in 1990. He then served as a member of New Boston Village Council for four years.
Turner also distinguished himself by being the only person ever awarded an honorary diploma by the New Boston School District, recognizing him as a member of the graduating class of 1946. Turner quit the ninth grade at Glenwood High School in New Boston in 1942 and took a job at Emmitt’s Grocery Store. In the post-Depression, World War II-era of the 1940s, many students dropped out to enter the workforce and help their families. Elwood Turner of New Boston was one of those students. In 2010 he proudly accepted his diploma from New Boston School Superintendent Mike Staggs.
“He has been a person of service to our community,” New Boston Mayor Jim Warren said Saturday after learning of Turner’s death. “He served in the fire department. Then he went on Council and was a great Council person. When he was on Council we enacted a lot of good ordinances. I think he was a person a lot of people respected because of his service to New Boston. I think he has truly been a true leader in New Boston over the years in the capacities he has served in and the dedication he has given to New Boston. He was here when we were going through the rough times. He’s going to be missed tremendously.”
Turner was born on November 23, 1927 in New Boston, the only son of the late Lonz and Hazel Clevenger Turner. He attended Glenwood High School and later married his high school sweetheart Edna Mae Hatton on May 16, 1948. Together they attended the Christ United Methodist Church in Sciotoville.
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the D.W. Swick Funeral Home in New Boston.