Wednesday, February 29, 2012


* Disclaimer *
There are going to be lots of posts about Dad mainly because I want my boys to know what kind of maternal grandfather they had and I like to have it written down so I'll never forget.

Brief History of PopPop

Your PopPop's full name was William Richard Turberville and his parents (your great-grandparents) were William George Turberville and Blanche Sowell Turberville. Your great-grandmother died when PopPop was in college. Your great-grandfather was a pharmacist and your great-great-grandfather owned the Turberville Clinic in Century, Florida which I understand to have been a hospital. PopPop grew up in Century, Florida which is right in the panhandle and on the Florida/Alabama line. Your great-grandmother was from Flomaton, Alabama which was right on the state line across from Century. PopPop was an only child and his parents spoiled him rotten. I've been told that he had a Harley Davidson, a private swimming pool and tennis courts at his house, and multiple cars and boats. His cousins have said "that if there were a person with a reason to be selfish then it was your PopPop". But the crazy thing is that PopPop was far from selfish. Again, his cousins have said that PopPop always shared whatever he had with all of his friends no matter what.

He was a generous and selfless man.

PopPop's Colt league in baseball won the World Series in 1959 and he was also on Auburn's 1963 SEC Championship team in baseball, too. PopPop was a good baseball player. He loved all sports but especially Auburn's. He graduated from Auburn in 1965 with a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy. While at Auburn, he was a member of Sigma Nu fraternity (so are your Uncle Bull and Kentos) and his nickname was The Wheel. He got this nickname from his red, convertible Corvette that he drove. If there were ever a place PopPop would have moved it would have been Auburn. His love ran deep.

He was an athletic and smart man.

After graduation he became a naval aviator in the Vietnam War. He flew P3s looking for enemy submarines. That is when he met BecBec. She was teaching for the Department of Defense in Okinawa and that is where he was stationed. They met, fell in love, he broke off his engagement back home, and married BecBec on March 15, 1969.

He was a man full of love and support.

After he got out of the Navy, he flew for Eastern Airlines. In 1981 he was highjacked to Cuba when a group of terrorists got on the plane and doused themselves with gasoline threatening to light themselves and a flight attendant on fire if they didn't get flown to Cuba. PopPop was the 2nd Officer and was the communicator between the terrorists and captain of the plane. They landed in Cuba and the terrorists were arrested. He stayed with Eastern until 1989 when the airline went bankrupt. I remember walking the picket line with him in Columbia.

He was a man of conviction and truth.

After Eastern, he flew for Kiwi which is an airline that a bunch of ex-Eastern airline pilots started. PopPop was in that group of owners. All during this time, though, he kept up his pharmacy license and was filling in at pharmacies. After fully retiring from flying, he worked as a pharmacist filling in for other pharmacists around the area.

He was a man of hard work and dependability.

This is where his love of the RV started. PopPop bought a RV and off BecBec and PopPop went. They took it to all of the Auburn home football games, to the mountains, the beaches, out west, basically any where. I think he went through three of them. All the grandchildren referred to it as PopPop's bus. Just this past year, we went to the beach for a week with PopPop and BecBec and to Disney World. PopPop was always up for an adventure with BecBec.

He was a man who had many great adventures.

But most importantly, PopPop was full of God's love. He lived his life in His footsteps. He was a great example of a Godly man. He was not one to be evangelical but he stood strong and firm in his faith.

He was a faithful servant.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


There is no denying it - my Dad was a great man. He loved us unconditionally, he always had a listening ear, wanted to make sure everyone was doing their best, treated my Mom with the utmost respect and love, and thought his grandchildren hung the moon. I'm so sad for a million reasons but one of the reasons is because my boys won't remember how great he was besides stories that I tell them. Even at age 6, Hughes will only remember a few things.

The last time I saw Dad alive was when I was having lunch with him and Mom on the Thursday before he died. He was wearing his normal Auburn attire. Dad and I agreed that Mom is always running late and how it drives us both nuts. Dad talked about how proud he was of David and how excited he was for our move to DC. Before he left, he got right down on eye-level with Banks and said "PopPop loves you" while pointing to him. He always left the boys like this. I gave him a kiss and then they were off to the creekhouse to drop off some things. That was it.

What I am thankful for is the relationship that I had with him. It was a great one. Sure, every time I called home and he answered he immediately said "here's your mama". He wasn't one to chat on the phone. Even his voicemail on his cell phone says "leave a message". I can understand why the majority of my high school friends were scared to death of him. He had a gruff voice, said few words, and had a dry sense of humor. Not until later in life did they realize what a softie my Dad really was.

He was a great shag partner and we knew each other's moves. He made the best collards and loved to grill. He was one of the hardest working men I have ever known and truly enjoyed it. Do you know any other retired airline pilots who also practice pharmacy in their spare time?

He was the most comfortable in an old Auburn t-shirt and khaki shorts. He saw no need in trying to impress people. He did get dressed-up but only if Mom told him he needed to. He wore his hats too high on his head and would often push his glasses halfway up his forehead. And he always had on his Auburn belt.

Hughes and PopPop

BecBec and PopPop with the grandkids before Collins was born

In Hilton Head at the beach last summer. We spent a week with PopPop and BecBec just relaxing and enjoying the pool and beach.

Collins and PopPop napping on the porch at the creekhouse.

At Disney World, starting the Buzz Lightyear ride. I think PopPop had the most fun. We also spent a week with them down in Orlando this past November.

At Disney before the stunt car show.

I think this is at Disney, too.

Last family photo at the Wimberly Dinner during Christmas.

I've been told that one day the pain won't be as painful and the emptiness won't feel so empty. Right now, I feel like I am only a shell. One day the sun will shine again and I will find my smile but for now I'm taking it hour by hour, day by day.

My Dad was a great man.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Introvert vs. Extrovert

Email from David:

I read this article in Time magazine while getting the car serviced this morning. I don't think you will be able to access it without a subscription, but it was really good and made me think of Hughes. It was all about introverts and how they are the thinkers - cautious and calculated. Society tends to lean towards the extroverted kids who are all personallity and outgoing, etc. But the introverts are the ones who tend to become the writers, scientists, musicians, and deep thinkers of the world. Notable extroverts were Bill Clinton, George Bush, etc., while introverts were the likes of Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Ghandi, etc. The article even mentioned that introverts may be better CEOs because they listen more than they talk, which can result in more empowered employees = better business efficiency. Go Hughes!

The other article in the same issue was more health/parenting related. It desribed an interesting study that tested various simuli on babies (popping balloons, other loud noises or distractions, etc.). Some babies reacted loudly (crying), some reacted as slightly interested. Those same babies were later assessed as children and the loud reaction babies were the introverts whereas the calm unaffected babies were the extroverts (and of course there was a group of intermediates too). Anyway, it was totally all about Hughes since he was so sensitive as a baby to loud noises and strangers getting in his face and is clearly more of an introverted personality (i.e., building Legos rather than all day basketball marathon with his friends down the street).

So big picture - Hughes will grow up to become a billionaire investor or software designer and Banks will grow up to be president, hahaha. Collins...hmmmm...maybe a billionaire president?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Do you know the Muffin Man?

On the way home from Banks' preschool today:

Banks: Mom, do you know the Muffin Man?

Mom: um, well, I know the song

(I start singing the song)

Banks: Can the Muffin Man come to our house?

Mom: I don't know.

Banks: He lives on Drury Lane.

Mom: yes, yes he does