Cover photo for Judith Payne Turner's Obituary
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1948 Judith Payne Turner 2023

Judith Payne Turner

December 28, 1948 — June 8, 2023

 

In Memory of

Judith Payne Turner

December 28, 1948 – June 8, 2023

 

Judith Payne Turner died on June 8, 2023.  She was 74.

 

She is survived by her husband of 55 years, Steve Turner, son Jay and his wife Christi, grandchildren Katherine and Stephen, as well as a multitude of nieces and nephews.  She is preceded in death by her parents Ezra Earl and Georgia V. Payne, her two brothers Jerry and Martin, and her daughter Laura Anne Turner.

 

Judy grew up in Allen County Kentucky.  As a petite, attractive teenager, with an infectious spirit, Judy was named Miss Allen County in 1966.  During high school she met the love of her life, her husband Steve.  Steve’s wit and charm quickly attracted Judy’s attention, but the quality which always meant the most to her was the genuine, heartfelt way Steve treated Judy with chivalrous respect.

 

Intelligent and an eager lifelong learner, Judy attended George Peabody College while Steve was enrolled at Vanderbilt University.  Her quick mind was a gift, and no jigsaw puzzle was her equal, even one with 25,000 pieces as reported by the Nashville Scene.  

 

Judy admitted that moving to Nashville with Steve in 1986 brought a measure of culture shock, but she was not to be intimidated.   When Judy and Steve made a home of Butler’s Run on Second Avenue in the mid-1990s, it was a time when many in the city had given up on its downtown.  And while the risk was incalculable, Judy and Steve boldly ventured forth with a pioneer spirit, sparking a renaissance for downtown Nashville that no one could have imagined.

 

Judy was a loyal and trustworthy friend, and a determined advocate for causes like Fifty Forward and the Downtown Nashville Public Library.  She was never one to seek the spotlight for herself.  Yet, Judy’s introduction of John Updike in 2006, when he was presented with the Library’s “Literary Award,” is remembered to this day for its modest eloquence and grace.

 

Along with many triumphs and adventures, Judy was not immune from the hardships that life has to offer.  Judy dealt with Parkinson’s late in life which complicated and strained her daily routine.  Facing these trials together served as

a great example of how Judy and Steve doubled each other’s joys and halved their burdens.

 

During their lifetime together the mention of one quickly brought the other to mind. When Judy and Steve were honored by Fifty Forward, Steve summed up their love affair by reciting the classic Vince Gill song, Look at Us, with its precious chorus, “If you want to see, How true love should be, Then just look at us.”

 

Judith Payne Turner lived a life full of remarkable experiences.  She was a source of contagious energy, often times sparked by her innocent smile.  Still, the moments she prized the most were the ones spent with family, surrounded by the most prized treasure of all – the love of those you hold dear in your heart. 

 

Visitation will be held at Second Presbyterian Church 3511 Belmont Blvd., Nashville, TN 37215 from 11 AM to 1 PM on Saturday June 17th, 2023.  A celebration of Judy Turner’s life will be held at 1 PM at the church following the visitation.

 

Memorial Donations may be made to Nashville Public Library Foundation https://nplf.org or Fifty Forward https://fiftyforward.org/invest-in-us/

 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Judith Payne Turner, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, June 17, 2023

11:00am - 1:00 pm (Central time)

Second Presbyterian Church

3511 Belmont Blvd, Nashville, TN 37215

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Saturday, June 17, 2023

Starts at 1:00 pm (Central time)

Second Presbyterian Church

3511 Belmont Blvd, Nashville, TN 37215

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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