Dr. Barbara Turner passed away on 1/28/13 at the age of 58 after a long battle with breast cancer. She died in her home with her family by her side, having fought valiantly and gracefully since 2006. Barbara practiced family medicine in Sonoma County since 1995, prior to that she had been at Benicia Family Medicine since 1991. She loved being a doctor for families, having cared for numerous patients from their birth delivery to their adulthood, and from adulthood to their senior years. She was ever compassionate and loving with everyone she treated and never lost enthusiasm for her life's work. It was truly her passion. Barbara grew up in Bloomfield Hills, MI, the youngest of three girls. She came from a family of medical professionals on both her mother's and father's side of the family. Her father, Dr Stanley Turner, her grandfather, and three maternal uncles practiced medicine. Her mother, Letitia Turner, and a maternal aunt were nurses. Barbara was a member of her high school diving team, loved to ski, and was an avid and lifelong football fan. Following high school she attended the University of Michigan. Barbara graduated from the U of M with a bachelor's degree in 1976, the same year she entered the UC Santa Barbara Speech Pathology program. She received her MS in Speech Pathology in 1978 and then moved to the San Francisco Bay Area where she worked for several years in this field. In 1983 she entered the UC Irvine School of Medicine where she then earned her MD in 1987. Barbara did her residency at Contra Costa County Merrithew Hospital from 1987 to 1991 Barbara met her future husband Steve in San Francisco in 1980, and the two fell in love and were married in 1984. They had their son, Ryan, in 1990. The family decided on Sonoma County as a place to put down roots and have been residents of Santa Rosa since 1995. She has been a 49ers season ticket holder since 1980 and it was only her illness that finally kept her from attending home games. Barbara loved travel, her European Cruise in 2010 being the high point. She was an avid reader and was never without a book. She was a cat lover and always had at least one cat as a member of the family, often two. Barbara regaled in hosting parties and dinners and always looked forward to putting on her office Christmas party every year. Barbara has made friends wherever she lived, some going back to childhood, and has maintained these friendships to the end. She treasured her close relationships with colleagues and never tired of "talking medicine". She equally loved talking sports with her son, Ryan. Barbara never missed someone's birthday and was so generous with gifts, time and attention. She was loved and will be missed by so many, and she has loved each and every one in return. Barbara is survived by her loving husband, Steve O'Rourke, and her adoring son, Ryan Turner O'Rourke; her sister Susan of Atlanta, GA; her father Dr. Stanley Turner and her stepmother Dr. Karen Turner of Hilton Head, SC. Barbara was preceded in death by her mother, Letitia Turner, and her sister Patricia Gianetti. She is also survived by numerous in-laws, nieces and nephews, grand nephews and grand nieces, and cousins, all of whom she loved dearly. A service will be held at the Chapel of the Chimes, 2601 Santa Rosa Ave, on Sunday, 2/10/13 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
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Published Online in the Press Democrat from Feb. 2 to Feb. 5, 2013