|Birth: ||Mar. 5, 1931|
|Death: ||Aug. 18, 2011|
Norma was born on March 5, 1931, and passed away on Thursday, August 18, 2011, at the age of 80 years old.
She was a prominent, nationally known Native American Elder and spiritual leader affiliated with the local Mono and Dumna tribes from the Auberry, North Fork, and Table Mountain areas.
In addition to being a recognized Medicine-person among Indian tribes throughout California, she was also known statewide as a renowned traditional basketmaker, cultural expert, tribal historian, storyteller, and community activist.
Beginning in the early 1970's she became a major figure in the revitalization of traditional California Indian cultural and spiritual practices throughout the local area and around the state.
She was instrumental in the revival of the Bear Dance ceremony in Yosemite and supported traditional ceremonies of other tribes. She dedicated her life working with local Indian youth and children, developing innovative cultural and education programs based on native traditional and spiritual teachings.
Over the past forty years, thousands of local Indian youth attended her traditional gatherings, which emphasized 'Walking the Red Road' and abstaining from drugs and alcohol.
She helped establish the first Native American alcohol recovery program in the Fresno area (Turtle Lodge), and served on the board of several statewide organizations, such as California Traditional Indian Health Program and California Indian Basketmaker's Association (CIBA). Mrs. Behill's loss to the local Indian tribes and community is immeasurable.
Surviving is her son, Keith Turner of Fresno; daughter, Carrie Edd of Auberry; granddaughter Candice; and two grandchildren.
Also surviving are sisters, Joan Lee, Shirley Clark, Julie Turner, and Gay Turner; brothers, Donald Turner and Jacky Turner.
Viewing will be held at Clovis Funeral Chapel (Clovis and Barstow) on Thursday, August 25, 2011, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m.
Traditional Cry Dance Ceremony to be held at the Turner residence in Auberry on Friday evening, August 26, 2011.
Traditional Native American Graveside Service is scheduled at the Big Sandy Rancheria Cemetery on Saturday, August 27, 2011, beginning at 11:00 a.m., followed by dinner at Big Sandy Rancheria Community Center.
Everyone is welcome to come honor Norma Turner's life.
Published in the Fresno Bee from August 25 to August 26, 2011
Nokomis Tenaya Turner (1907 - 1995)
Caroline Murphy Turner (1904 - 1944)
Harold William Turner (1928 - 1952)*
Norma Turner Behill (1931 - 2011)
James Ralph Turner (1935 - 1968)*
Leroy Holly Turner (1937 - 1995)*
Luke Warren Turner (1940 - 1989)*
Judy Louise Turner (1946 - 1947)**
Big Sandy Rancheria Tribal Cemetery
Created by: D.A.R.
Record added: Aug 25, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 75484592