Longtime Soldotna resident Philip “Tony” Anthony Turkington died Wednesday, May 23, 2007, at his home surrounded by family. He was 76.
A celebration of life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 9, 2007, at the Soldotna High School Auditorium. A reception will immediately follow at the Soldotna Elks Lodge.
Mr. Turkington was born the youngest of six boys March 13, 1931, in Manchester, Conn. He was voted college class president twice, team captain of swimming and football teams, took All-American honors in swimming and received an Arthur W. Pierce Award from Dean Academy as most outstanding all-around student of his graduating class. He received a bachelor of arts degree in liberal arts from the University of Rode Island.
Mr. Turkington moved his family to Soldotna in 1969. He started and ran an insurance business and was elected president of the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce on three occasions. He was voted Business Person of the Year and Person of the Year by the chamber. He also was a charter member of the Soldotna Elks Lodge and Soldotna Rotary Club.
“Countless memories and tales will be told for years to come about my dad and the kind of man he was to not only my family, friends and me, but also to complete strangers because he had that kind of impact upon those he touched. His vibrancy in life was contagious. The one thing above all others that rings true for me is the red door to our house. It was always open to anyone and many walked through that door. Whether it be an old drunk seeking company, a hot meal (Mom’s were the best!) or a firm talking to as Dad took him home, or it was a wandering nephew with hippie friends in tow, or a young GI needing a helping hand, that door was always open.
“For it was his way. I for one tested it well. That door would never shut. Especially on family and no matter the transgression. In his last days, Dad found out there was a door left open for him in a house far greater than his own. For this blessing and the witness my siblings were able to share, I will always hold dear and know he is at peace in his new house,” his son, Brad, said.
Mr. Turkington was preceded in death by his parents, Milton J. Turkington I and John and Clara Wallet; brothers, Alan Turkington, Roy Turkington and Milton Turkington II.
He is survived by his brothers, Robert Turkington and Steven Turkington and his wife, Carolyn; mother of his children, Sylvia Turkington; children, Bradford J. Turkington, Therese Turkington, Linda Jones and her husband, Troy, Kevin Turkington and his wife, Angela, Jeffrey Turkington and his wife, Debbie, and Leslie Whaley and her husband, Bill; 23 grandchildren; and 27 great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made to the American Cancer Society, 1057 Fireweed Lane Ste. 204, Anchorage, AK 99503.
Arrangements were made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel.
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