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The street leading to Robert B. Turner Elementary School will soon be named in honor of another member of the Turner family.
Helen B. Turner Drive will be christened during a public ceremony Monday, Nov. 1.
Mrs. Turner and her late husband were very influential figures in the history of education in Anderson County.
Mr. Turner was the second principal of Western School and worked at the school for several decades.
Mrs. Turner also taught at the school for many years, including a few after her husband retired.
Kent Stevens, the fourth principal at Western, said the Turners worked together and one would not have been as successful without the other.
“Without Helen Turner, Robert B. Turner could not have achieved many of the things he did,” Stevens said. “She was the drive behind Robert B. Turner, and I think it’s fitting [the street] be named Helen Turner Drive.”
A ceremony and reception are scheduled for noon Monday. The ceremony will begin in the school’s gymnasium, said Superintendent Sheila Mitchell.
Schools are not in session that day, and Stevens and Mitchell both encouraged community members and especially anyone with ties to Western to attend.
Stevens said he hopes Mrs. Turner will be in attendance.
Western School served students in preschool through 12th grade until 1989.
Beginning in 1990, the school was renamed Western Elementary School and was home to students in preschool through sixth grade.
When the need for a new school arose, the Board of Education and then-superintendent Sonny Fentress opted to name the new building in honor of Mr. Turner for the impact he had in the community.
Western Elementary closed in May 2002 and Turner Elementary opened that fall.
Stevens said he was very pleased the new school was named after Mr. Turner. His only wish was that it could have been named after both Robert and Helen.
“They were a team,” he said.
Stevens said he is happy to see the street be named after Mrs. Turner.
Mitchell said she is glad the district was presented with such a unique opportunity to honor both of the Turners.
“They had such an impact on so many lives,” Mitchell said. “It’s great to be able to honor both of them.”
E-mail Shannon Brock at email@example.com.