Fallen Soldier: Thomas Turner, Jr.

Thomas Turner, Jr.
Dates: Died July 14, 2006
Hometown: Cottonwood, CA
Branch of Service: Army
Rank: Sergeant
Player: Nathan Wang

Sergeant Thomas B Turner, 31, of Cottonwood, California was assigned to the 1st Squadron, 32nd Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Kentucky. He died on July 14, 2006, from injuries sustained when an explosive device detonated near his Bradley Fighting Vehicle in Al Muqdadiyah, Iraq.

Growing up in San Francisco, a bashful Turner played checkers and helped his dad tinker with motorcycles. He and his dad were inseparable.

The family then moved north to Cottonwood, CA where the elder Turner began ranching and working in timber. SGT Turner’s dad died while he was in high school. He put college off to take over the family business. Eight years later, he sold the business and attended Chico State. When he enlisted, Turner told friends that it felt like a calling.

A soft-spoken man who detailed most days in a journal, SGT Turner had a daredevil streak: going skydiving, hiking and camping and earning a black belt in karate.

He is survived by Jennifer, daughter Sarah and son, Ethan.