Tributes flow for 'man of passions' - family, friends pay respects after Croppa Creek shooting tragedy

HE HAD a passion for the outdoors, gourmet food and home brew, but the farm and family were Glendon Eric Turner’s great loves.

TRAGIC TOLL: Police cordon off the road leading to the property where Tamworth man Glen Turner was allegedly shot dead by a landholder on Tuesday. Photo: The Moree Champion. INSET – Glen Turner.

TRAGIC TOLL: Police cordon off the road leading to the property where Tamworth man Glen Turner was allegedly shot dead by a landholder on Tuesday. Photo: The Moree Champion. INSET – Glen Turner.

The 51-year-old Tamworth environmental compliance officer lived for his wife Alison, 

10-year-old daughter, Alexandra, and nine-year-old son Jack.

There were life dreams mapped out for the loving family of four from Dungowan which have been shattered with the shooting death of the man who has been called “nature’s true gentleman”.

Family, friends, colleagues and the Tamworth and Moree communities are reeling after the shocking murder of Mr Turner, gunned down while carrying out his duties on a remote laneway in Croppa Creek on Tuesday evening.

His family said he was an accomplished pianist and gourmet enthusiast who appreciated fine wine.

“His passing comes at a time when his dreams of the farm and family, which he had planned and lovingly built together with Alison, were coming to fruition,” a statement from the family read.

“He had also developed a passion for home-brewing, which he viewed as a craft, forever striving to achieve that perfect brew.”

Taking the kids to the beach, and the outdoors were his favourite past times, especially enjoying quite time on his Dungowan property with Alison and the family.

Ogunbil Rd resident Peter Bainbridge said it was a big loss. 

“He was of good character and very friendly. I never had any bad dealings with him. He was a real family man and great with the kids whenever I saw him,” Mr Bainbridge told The Leader.

The Turner children’s fellow students and family were being comforted yesterday and offered counselling, as they remembered Mr Turner’s impact on school life.

“Glen was well-known and highly respected at Tamworth Public School, particularly for the contribution he made through the Parents and Citizens’ Association and his role of president of the association,” school principal Lee Preston said.

“News of the tragic death of Glen Turner has come as a great shock to us all.”

He was “Glen” to those closest around him. Born in Wauchope to parents Harold “Jack” and Coral Turner, Mr Turner grew up in Telegraph Point with three sisters, Therese, Fran and Rosalie. He was a qualified surveyor who had worked overseas before returning, making his home in Tamworth, with many years under his belt at local firm Brown and Krippner.

Mr Turner made the move in 2000 to become a senior compliance officer with the NSW government, holding roles in the Department of Natural Resources before moving into the Office of Environment and Heritage in 2007.

It was a job in which he was held in high regard.

“Glen was one of our most experienced compliance officers,” OEH chief executive Terry Bailey said. “The loss of a colleague touches us all, even more so under tragic circumstances.”

Yesterday, distraught colleagues in the Tamworth base were sent home as they tried to comprehend the loss of their co-worker.

Moree landholder Roger Fitzgerald, who worked with Mr Turner on issues around the Moree area, said he was professional in every sense of the word.

“He impressed me as one of nature’s gentlemen, a chap just doing his job quietly and well,” he said yesterday.

“It’s the worst-case scenario.”

Former member for Tamworth Peter Draper remembered fondly his dealings with Mr Turner, on all things environmental.

“You would go a long way to find a man more passionate about their job and more dedicated to a better future for our local area,” Mr Draper said. 

“He was a wonderful family man and he’s going to be very, very sadly missed by everybody who knew him.”

A sentiment echoed by many locals who have described it as nothing short of tragic, “a life lost too soon”.