Kimberly Rene Turner, beloved fiancé, daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, niece, and lifelong friend went home to heaven on April 15, 2021. Kim passed away at her beachfront cabin on Hat Island, Washington in the Puget Sound. She was blessed to spend her final days looking out at her favorite view as she regaled family and friends with descriptions of grey whales and orcas playing in the water off her beach. She passed with her fiancé and love of her life, Rod Scruggs, by her side.
Kim had a daring and mischievous spirit that included an incredible zest for adventure. She was fun and feisty, smart and outspoken - she did not stand down and you always knew where you stood with her. At her core she was a uniter and friend to all. She truly saw people only for who they were. She was there with a listening ear whenever you needed her. She was beautiful both on the inside and out. Always warm and compassionate to all who knew her. A vision of her brilliant blonde hair, striking blue eyes, and pouty lips will certainly remain in our minds forever. Kim had a deep and abiding faith and learned to serve others at a young age. She was fiercely devoted to her family, friends, and students with special needs. She was an amazing dog mom. Kim loved and was so incredibly loved by all. Kim was famous for speaking with her family and friends on a daily basis. There was not often a day that went by that we ALL didn’t hear from her! It is impossible to reflect on her life without laughing at the many stories that could only have happened to our quirky, authentic, and unapologetic Kimmy.
Kim was born on December 24, 1972, to Diane Cornwell Owings and James E. Turner in San Antonio, Texas. Her arrival brought to fruition her mother's lifelong dream of having a towheaded blue eyed baby girl. She was the eldest of three and simply adored and doted on her younger sister, Jacqueline, and baby brother, Michael. Kim was an exceptionally bright child who spoke her first word at six months saying “hi” to all of the parishioners at church. As a toddler she quickly gave a preview of her future and lifelong independent spirit declaring, “Mommy, I can do it my own self”.
Throughout her youth she made fast, lifelong friends as her father’s job in the ministry took her family from Texas to Louisiana, California, Arizona, Alaska and finally Colorado. Many of these friendships she had recently rekindled or maintained until her final days.
By the time she was a teenager in the state of Alaska, she used her penchant for adventure and athletic ability to continue her life’s path of inspiring others and building community. Kim taught synchronized swimming classes, was a ski instructor, a rafting guide on the Kenai River, choreographed cheerleading dances, and was chosen to play badminton for the Yukon Territory and Alaska winter Olympics. Kim was also a wonderful pianist and won several awards for her performances.
As a college student Kim first attended Ambassador University in Texas and then transferred to University of Northern Colorado in Greeley (UNC) to pursue her lifelong love and commitment to education. Kim completed a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UNC in 1997 and followed up with a Masters in Special Education - Severe Needs Affective in 2003. In 2013 she also earned a Masters Degree in Administration from the University of Phoenix Colorado and her Principals License.
Kim simply loved people and made life better for others both personally and professionally. She was an amazing educator with a true heart for her students and their unique and individual needs. In each of her roles she was totally devoted to them- they were her priority, and she was their best advocate making sure they were always being served. Throughout her career she impacted the lives of thousands. Her dogged commitment and love for special needs students was directly responsible for an untold number of them living far more fulfilling lives than if they had not crossed paths with Kim.
Her career in education spanned over 20 years - she spent the first 6 years in the classroom teaching children with affective needs and then went on to be an administrator. In the classroom she set strong strong behavioral expectations and created a structured culture that inspired and fostered life long learning. A majority of those years were spent with Adam 12 School District and included roles as Affective Needs Teacher at Northglenn Middle School, District Secondary Behavior Specialist, and Coordinator of Early Childhood Student Support Services. Her passion and commitment to meeting the needs of the students resulted in a steady progression of additional responsibilities including building programs for children with autism focusing specifically on communication and behavior. These programs quickly became models for the state. She also designed and ran an Extended School Year summer program for students with year round significant needs. Kim was pleased to have provided instructional leadership focused on implementing successful behavior intervention plans and non-violent crisis intervention.
Kim retired from education in 2019 to move to Snohomish, Washington to be with her fiancé Rod and his daughter Chloe. Together they became entrepreneurs, owning and running their own laundry business. Here, Kim again changed lives by inspiring their staff whom she considered her coworkers to take pride in their work and community. She developed smooth running systems for their business that will forever continue on. Rod, his family, and their devoted team considered Kim a tremendous blessing.
Kim was preceded in death by her dear father, Jim Turner, and beloved dogs Homer, Burton, and Misu. She is survived by her mother Diane Owings, step-father Mike Owings of Thornton, CO; her fiancé Rod Scruggs, his daughter Chloe, and dogs Byrdie, Mindie, and Tira of Snohomish, WA; her brother Mike and sister-in-law Sara Turner; her sister Jackie and brother-in-law Dustin Hahn, and their children Berkley and Asher Hahn all also of Thornton, CO; Step-sister Kim Fleischman and step-brother Brian Owings and their respective families; Uncle Melvin and Aunt Margaret Turner of Goodlettsville, TN and numerous cousins and dear friends across the country.
Kim lived an extraordinary and fulfilling life. She was truly a gift from God and bright light to all. She selflessly used her talents to improve the lives of those around her. Her incredible ability to empathize and show love to others leaves everyone she touched aspiring to always be kind, compassionate, value close loving relationships, and take care of each other. Kim’s sudden passing has left a hole in all of our hearts. She will be sorely missed. This world was left in far better state because of her presence. We love you Kimmy - we always will.
A Memorial Service celebrating Kim's life will be held on Tuesday, April 27th at 11:00 a.m. at Westminster Christian Church. A livestream of the service will be available here starting promptly at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday. Family and friends are welcome to join the immediate family following the service at Broomfield County Commons Cemetery for the Committal of Kim's urn.
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