The noble eagle has fallen; the mighty lion is dead. Henry Haywood Turner, III, passed away on Sunday, May 3 at St. Francis Hospital after a brief illness. He was 67.
Turner, a City Magistrates Court Judge for over 20 years, was a man of impeccable character and irreproachable honor. These attributes earned him the respect and admiration of most of his colleagues on the bench. He, in turn, held those he deemed to merit it in the highest esteem.
As a jurist, Turner was a true man of the people. In his courtroom it didn't matter if one were clad in a thousand-dollar suit or in a T-shirt and jeans. His courtroom was not a railroad depot where poor people, unable to afford high-priced legal counsel, were railroaded into jail or prison. Although considered a brilliant (albeit eccentric) man, Turner was the epitome of humility. Upon entering his courtroom he, in his distinctive stentorian voice, told those assembled, "Please remain seated. This isn't Europe; there's no royalty here."
Unlike most of his colleagues, Turner did not consider his courtroom to be an ATM for the city's coffers. The first words from his mouth were not "How much money do you have?" This, of course, aroused the ire of our august City Council who threatened to freeze his pay if he did not impose more draconian fines. Turner insisted that he would not do so on the backs of the citizens. What's in YOUR wallet?
Turner, an intellectual giant of a man and jurist, will be sorely missed by his family, numerous friends, and, ardent animal lover that he was, by the score of cats that owned him. Godspeed, Judge Turner.
David Carothers of Cols.,Ga.