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Father David Turnbull

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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Mass of Christian Burial for Franciscan Father David Turnbull, a former teacher and longtime missionary, was celebrated on July 21 at St. Clement Church in St. Bernard. Father Turnbull, 79, died on July 16 at St. Margaret Hall in Cincinnati.

Father David Turnbull (Courtesy photo)

A native of Belmont, Mass., Father Turnbull entered the Franciscans in 1948 after graduating from St. Francis High School Seminary in Mt. Healthy. He attended Duns Scotus College in Southfield, Mich.; Holy Family Theologate in Oldenburg, Ind.; and was ordained in Indianapolis in 1957. The first 16 years of Father Turnbull’s ministry were spent in education, primarily as a math teacher and spiritual director. He served at Bishop Luers High School in Ft. Wayne, Indiana and at his alma mater.

In 1973 Father Turnbull began 31 years of ministry in the Philippines, working in formation, parish ministry and serving as a chaplain for the Poor Clares. Father Turnbull faced a series of health problems following his return from the Philippines in 2004, and was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) last year. Just a few weeks before his death, he accepted the Christian Life Award from former students in the Franciscan Alumni Association.

Father Turnbull is survived by a brother, Friar John Turnbull, and two sisters, Joan Benkowski and Alison Kelley.

Interment was in St. Mary Cemetery.

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