NORFOLK, St. Lawrence County, NY - Lee H. Turner, 88, formerly of Redford, NY, passed away at his home July 19th, 2019.
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Lee was born in Dannemora, NY on Feb. 10th, 1931, son of Charles & Elizabeth Turner (Farrell). In 1934 his father, a guard at Dannemora Prison, retired & the family moved to Redford, NY. Lee attended the Wilson 1-room grade school, then Sallaz Academy & graduated in 1948 from Plattsburg High School. In his teens he was a member of the Town of Saranac baseball team. After high school graduation he worked for a year & then attended SUNY Binghamton University, graduating in 1953. While in college, he worked full time for McLeans Dept. store in Binghamton, NY & played on their championship softball team (1st base). He then attended St. John's University Law School, evening division, in NY City graduating in 1956 & was admitted to the NY State Bar in Nov.1956, and the Federal Bar in 1959. While in law school he worked full time as a law clerk at the Manhattan law firm of Bleakley, Platt, Gilchrist & Walker. He then went to work for Allstate Insurance Company as a personal injury claims adjuster, working out of Watertown, NY. In 1958, he opened a law office in Norwood, St. Lawrence County NY, handling cases of all kinds in all the various courts of the state and retired in 2010. He then became “Of Counsel" to the law firm of Lekki Hill Duprey & Bhatt, PC, Canton, Massena & Ogdensburg NY. He was a member of both the New York State Bar Assoc. & the St. Lawrence Cnty Bar Assoc. during his 50+ years long legal career. He was one of the original founding directors of the Town of Norfolk Development Corp. which was instrumental in the re-opening of Norfolk Paper Mill. Starting in 1985, he was one of he founding directors of the Town of Norfolk Museum & Historical Society, served as a director for many years & continued to be a member.
In 1984 Lee was appointed to the SUNY Potsdam College Council by Governor Mario Cuomo & served for 12 years. He worked with Joe Hopsicker to form Baldwin Acres - the Norwood Senior Citizens housing- serving on their board of directors many years, & was also their legal counsel. He served as the Norwood Village Attorney, & for periods over the years served as Norfolk Town Attorney, Norfolk Central School Attorney, Norfolk Fire District Attorney & the Town of Stockholm Attorney.
Lee was a man who never gave up & tackled every challenge with gusto! During his long, well-lived lifetime, he had many hobbies & interests including playing the fiddle. He learned to play as a teenager listening to his Grandfather Henry Farrell play, & music played a large roll in his enjoyment of life. He was a member of the NY State Old Tyme Fiddlers-Northern Chapter- & played at many of their dances & shows. He enjoyed many of life's offerings including sailing, wind surfing, canoeing, kayaking, skiing of every sort (water, downhill & x-country) ice skating, writing poetry, photography, dancing, gardening, baseball, reading (oh, how he LOVED to read, especially history!), listening to & writing music, hunting and fishing. In June 1983, he caught a NY State record Splake trout, weighing 12 lbs 15 oz, & proudly held the record for over 20 years. Lee also enjoyed researching his geneology spent many years working on the Turner-Farrell Family Tree & acquiring many old family photos. For about 5 years he played on the Massena Old Timers Hockey Team. Over the years, he was a member of the NY State Woodlot Owner's Association; the Lyd Brook Hunting Club; St. Regis Falls Sportsman's Club, Massena Rod & Gun Club, Indian Creek Nature Center, & Adirondack Architectural Heritage.
In 1978 he purchased land along the Racquette River on State Highway 56, Norfolk, & over a period of 25 years planted many trees & created 2 miles of beautiful walking trails. Over the years he gave tours of his property- fondly named “Racquette Trails”- to many groups & individuals. His favorite past time was beautifying the property & enjoying the peace & serenity of nature.
In 1955,while in law school, he married the former Mary Angela Rywelski in Brooklyn, NY. The couple had three children & later divorced.
Lee is survived by his companion of nearly 18 yrs., Martha Chichester Burroughs; his three children, sons Lee Herbert Jr., Manchester, NH, & Daryn Christopher, Goffstown, NH, his daughter Taralyn Turner Quigley & her husband Edward, W. Melbourne, FL; 3 grandchildren, Angela Elizabeth Quigley & Logan Turner Quigley, and Shauna Lee Turner; two brothers, Mark Turner, Plattsburg, NY, & James Turner (Bonnie), Rensselaer, NY. He was predeceased by his parents, brothers Henry & Harold, sisters Aurelia Turner Hope & Anne Turner Coppola; two half-sisters, Madeleine Turner Carter, Theresa Turner Sutherland, & half-brother, Charles Turner II.
Funeral arrangements are with the Donaldson Funeral Home,100 North Main St., Massena, New York. At Lee's request, the funeral is private & interrment of his remains will be at the convenience of the family in Magdala Solitude Cemetery, Morrisonville, NY, where other Turner family members are interred. Condolences may be made online to Donaldson Funeral Home at WWW. Donaldsonfh.com
Charitable donations may be made in Lee's memory to Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley, 6805 Rt. 11, Potsdam, NY, 13676, or the Clinton County Historical Association, 98 Ohio Ave., Plattsburg, NY,