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Brian Robert Turnacliff

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Brian Robert Turnacliff Obituary
Brian Robert Turnacliff

Brian Robert Turnacliff passed away on Sunday, March 3, at the age of 48, in Guangzhou, China. Born on April 15, 1964, in Los Angeles, CA, Brian attended Palos Verdes High School, the College of Santa Fe, in NM, and El Camino College in Torrance, CA.

Brian's love of music led him to work for
several years in the Los Angeles area music industry as a producer and songwriter. His accomplishments include country music icon Willie Nelson's Grammy-nominated album "How Great Thou Art," which he executive produced, and the album "It Rains" by Tiffany Heflin, which he wrote and produced. He was also a prose and screenwriter.

In 2004, he embarked on a life-changing adventure, moving to China to teach English. There he met his wife, Emma Wu Juan, and together they built up a successful jewelry export business, while Brian continued his teaching and songwriting. A devout Christian, Brian was very active with Emma in the Shekou Fellowship in Shenzhen, where they lived. Community outreach was especially important to them and they sponsored several children in a local orphanage. Emma remains in Shenzhen and is continuing the work they started there.

Brian also struggled in life, but despite his struggles, he leaves behind a lasting legacy to those who knew and loved him. Among his diverse interests and talents, he was a great cook - a gift he loved sharing with others, frequently arriving at the Shekou Fellowship's Brighter Future Bible Study meetings with home-cooked specialties to feed the entire group. He was also an avid fisherman, a home vegetable gardener, and an accomplished tennis player. He was a gifted communicator who often reached out to others in need, whether members of his community or total strangers.

A memorial service was held at the Shekou Fellowship in Shenzhen on Sunday, March 10, in the presence of Emma and her family, Brian's sister Anne, and friends and community members. Following the service, the family traveled to an island north of Shenzhen, where they sprinkled Brian's ashes into the South China Sea.

A second memorial service will be held at a later date to be announced, for family and friends in the Los Angeles area.

Brian was preceded in death by his parents, Robert Dale and Elda Mae Turnacliff, both of Palos Verdes Estates, CA. He is survived by his wife Emma, of Shenzhen, China, and his sister Anne, of Paris, France.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Shekou Fellowship for its music ministry. Please send checks to: Community of Hope, 14401 Biscayne Ave., Rosemount, MN 55068, making sure to include the words "CIRCLE OF FRIENDS / BRIAN TURNACLIFF" on either the memo line of the check or a separate sheet of paper. Please sign the guestbook at www.dailybreeze.com/obits.
Published in Daily Breeze from June 13 to June 16, 2013
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