Funeral services for Bill Turnbow, 79, of Portales, will be held at 10:00 AM, Tues., July 13, 2021 at the Southside Church of Christ with Doug Hale officiating, assisted by various family members. Burial will follow in the Portales Cemetery with Chris Willis, Eric Botos, Kyle Turnbow, Tony Botos, Derek Franz and Taylor Turnbow serving as pallbearers. Gerald Daughrity, Charles May, Charles Anderson, Jack Self, Arnold Atkins, Bruce McIndoe and Wayne Holland along with all of his countless other friends will serve as honorary pallbearers. Those desiring to make memorial contributions may send them to the Southside Church of Christ for the Single Mother Program in his memory.
Billy Edwin Turnbow was born Oct. 16, 1941 in Dona Ana, NM to the home of Opal Malie (Rogers) and Melvin Forrest "Slim" Turnbow, and was called home on July 7, 2021 while on a mountain bike ride with friends in Colorado. Bill's family moved to Bethel when he was a small child. He grew up on the family farm, helping with all of the daily chores. Bill attended the Floyd schools where he was active in all of the sports teams - baseball, basketball and even on the track team. Bill graduated in 1959, and went on to attend a year at Eastern New Mexico University. He began working climbing telephone poles for Mountain Bell. He was working in Roswell when he married Alice Arnold on Aug. 22, 1964 in Portales. They made their home in Roswell until 1966, when he was transferred to work in Santa Fe, and they made their home in Espanola. He later worked in Gallup for a year before returning to Espanola where he remained until 1979. At that time he moved his family to Portales to partner with his brother, Mel in an auto repair shop which they operated for twenty years. After selling the business, Bill worked briefly as shop foreman at Poynor's Auto Store in Portales until they closed. Since 2000, Bill has driven milk trucks for Western Dairy Transport.
Bill was a lifelong and very faithful member of the Church of Christ, and for many years he was a member of the Southside Church in Portales where he served as a deacon. All of his life he loved camping and fishing and hunting with his family. Bill was a runner for as many years as his knees would tolerate, and since then he has ridden bicycles for about the last twenty years. Besides his church, Bill was a member of the local Optimist Club where he wore many hats including serving as president. Bill never met a stranger. If he met you, by the time you parted he was your friend, and he never forgot you. Bill was always thinking of others, and even in his death he wanted to donate tissue to benefit someone else.
He is survived by Alice, his wife of almost 57 years of their home; his children, Dee Tomlinson of Alamogordo, NM, Mike and Teresa Turnbow of McKinney, TX, Shawna and Tony Botos of Boise, ID and Billy and Lori Turnbow of McKinney, TX; ten grandchildren, Starla Hill, Chris Willis, Billie Dee Saiz, Sydney and Kyle Turnbow, Eric and Erin Botos, and Matthew, Daniel and Levi Turnbow; two great-grandchildren, Aili Hill and Cian Hill; and a brother and sister-in-law, Benny and Arleen Turnbow of Paris, TX; as well as numerous other family members and his countless friends. Bill was preceded in death by his parents and his brother and sister-in-law, Mel and Kathy Turnbow.
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