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Nov 23 2019

Kiawah Island’s First Mayor Passes Away

Staff Report for The Island Connection

Bo Turner

Edward Bernard “Bo” Turner, the first mayor of the Town of Kiawah Island, passed away Oct. 27 at the age of 91.

A retired Army colonel, Turner served as mayor from 1988 to 1990. Under his administration, the town’s first ordinances were established, as was the beach management plan, the wildlife/ turtle programs and the Betsy Kerrison Parkway project. He also led the logistical recovery and cleanup following Hurricane Hugo in 1989.

Turner was born in Macon, Georgia, May 25, 1928. He attended public schools in Columbia, South Carolina, and was a member of The Citadel’s class of 1949. He served in the Army for 28 years, retiring in 1977.

His assignments took him to destinations including Vietnam, Germany, Hawaii and, finally, Atlanta. He attended the Army Command and General Staff College and participated in the Army War College.

Turner’s decorations included the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Services Commendation Medal and the Army Commendation Medal.

 Upon retiring from active duty, Turner joined Parsons, Brinkerhoff-Tudor, the general architect and engineer for the Metropolitan Area Rapid Transit project in Atlanta. From there he joined Fabrique Nationale’s FN Manufacturing Co. in Columbia. He moved to Kiawah Island in 1982.

Turner was active in the Episcopal Church of Our Saviour in Johns Island, where he was on the vestry, was senior and junior warden, verger and served on a number of committees. Upon moving into Charleston in 1999, he became a member of Old Saint Andrews Parish Church, where he served on the vestry and was project manager for the preservation and restoration of the 300-year-old church. Turner was a life member of the Association of Citadel Men, a member of the Brigadier Club and a past member of the Kiawah Seabrook Exchange Club, the Spring Valley Rotary Club and the American Legion.

He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Mary Louise Newman Turner; three sons: Edward B. Turner III (Harriet) of Ft. Payne, Alabama, James Timothy Turner (Wendy) of Anderson, South Carolina, and Wallace Newman Turner (Nancy) of Debary, Florida; a daughter, Susan Turner-Lowe of Pasadena, California (Carla Mazzio); a sister, Betty Turner Mears (Ted) of Florence, South Carolina; three grandsons; two granddaughters; and a great-grandson.

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