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Buckey Lee Turk

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March 26, 1935 - Jan. 21, 2020

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Buckey Lee Turk, also known as Buck or Coach Turk, is finally face to face with his Master as of Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020, at the age of 84. After a hard-fought battle with cancer, Buck passed away at his home in Harlingen surrounded by his family and loved ones.

Buck was born on March 26, 1935, in Del Rio to his parents William Albert and Edna Roberts Turk. He was the youngest of four children. After growing up in Carrizo Springs and graduating from Carrizo Springs High School in 1953, Buck attended college on basketball and football scholarships at the following colleges: San Angelo State University, Texas Christian University, Texas A&I at Kingsville and Texas Lutheran. His high school and college athletic endeavors provided the valuable experience needed to fulfill his lifelong dream of coaching. He later went on to earn a master’s degree in education from Texas State University.

On June 1, 1974, in Tomball, Coach Turk married “the most beautiful girl in the world,” Sondra Irene Crouch. The two of them came together to raise a blended family of seven children – five boys and two girls, with only eight years difference between the oldest and the youngest.

From the time Buck was a sophomore in high school, he knew he wanted to be a coach. He would often comment about how coaching was not a job to him, it was just something he loved doing. Buck coached in many places across the state of Texas, including Lyford, Jourdanton, Schertz-Cibolo, Boerne, Tomball, Del Rio, Sanderson, Tyler, Abilene, Joshua and San Benito. Although he never made it to a state championship game in football, his teams played in the quarterfinal and semifinal games. Coach Turk loved not only football, but was passionate about track, especially pole vault. He was blessed to have coached many athletes who competed at the state track meet in Austin, including two of his sons, his daughter and his grandson. He also loved coaching summer track, where he coached a pole-vaulter to nationals. Coach Turk believed in giving every young person the opportunity to reach their highest potential. This was evident in that he was willing to open his home to two of his athletes in Tomball, Joe Featherston and Perry Wooten.

After 44 years of coaching, Buck retired and his passion shifted to playing golf. He was a longtime member of the Harlingen Country Club where he enjoyed golfing with his wife and his friends. Even after he was unable to enjoy golf, he would not miss a morning breakfast at the club’s round table with his friends.

Buck loved the Lord and served Him faithfully. He was a member of First Baptist Church of Combes where he served as trustee, head of security and bus ministry.

Buck was preceded in death by his parents, William Albert Turk and Edna Roberts Turk; his siblings William “Bill” Albert Turk, Jr (Mary), Jean Solomon (Robert), Edna Alice Cunningham (John); infant daughter; and son Brent Lansford Turk.

Buck is survived by his loving wife Sondra Irene Turk of Harlingen; children Buckey Lee Turk, Jr. and wife Carolyn of College Station, Duane Rohde and wife Trish of Willis, Brodie Turk of Missouri, Kenneth Rohde and wife Jeanie of Del Rio, Bretta Rodriguez and husband Glenn of Carlsbad, Texas, and Carrie Holmes and husband Wayne of Iraan; 12 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren with one more on the way.

Visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 24, at Buck Ashcraft Funeral Home.

Funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 25, at First Baptist Church in Combes with a graveside services at 10 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 27, at Westlawn Cemetery in Del Rio.

In lieu of flowers memorial donation can be made to First Baptist Church of Combes for the Heavenly Vision Ministry, P.O. Box 598 Combes, TX 78535; the Gideons International, P.O. Box 97251 Washington, DC 20090-7251; or the Humane Society of Harlingen, 1106 Markowsky Ave., Harlingen, TX 78550.

You are invited to sign the guestbook or leave a memory at www.buckashcraft.com.

Arrangements are under the direction of Buck Ashcraft Funeral Home & Cremation Services.