David Grant Turpin

Published 12:22 pm Thursday, November 30, 2023

Our beloved David Grant Turpin, 74, passed peacefully on Monday, November 27, 2023. David was unconditionally loved and supported by his wife of 52 years, Pamela Caudell Turpin, and his daughters, sons-in-law, and grandchildren, Ashley, Greg, and Collins LaFon of Bristol, Tenn., and Lora, Eric, Roan, and Milo Leininger of Greensboro, N.C.
David was born March 3, 1949, in Radford, Va., to Ruth and Thornton Turpin. He attended Radford High School and discovered three of his greatest passions – playing football, baseball and dating his future wife, Pamela. His love of athletics brought him to Milligan College in Johnson City, Tenn., where he played baseball and tennis and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree with certifications in Health and Physical Education, Psychology, and Special Education. He later earned his Master’s Degree in Education from ETSU. The high school sweethearts were married September 3, 1971, and they lived in Johnson City, Tenn., and then Elizabethton, Tenn., to start their family.
David’s big heart extended into the classroom teaching special education for over 30 years. In addition to teaching, he coached and volunteered with a variety of sports in several high schools in Northeast Tennessee: Elizabethton, Daniel Boone, Unicoi, David Crockett, Tennessee High, Happy Valley, and West Greene High School. Coaching football was a lifelong passion for him and a place where he excelled professionally and built lasting friendships with players, families, and fellow coaches. He loved motivating his players, and he was often seen in the middle of a circle after football games smiling in prayer and leading a lively chant or song no matter the outcome of the game.
David was a staunch Alabama Crimson Tide fan, an avid reader, and enjoyed expressing himself artistically by painting and musically performing throughout his life. He attended Memorial Presbyterian Church and in more recent years, First Baptist Church, where he served both as deacon and member of the adult choir. He also loved attending his Sunday school class and lunch bunch. More than anything, his family was his source of happiness and strength; he adored doting on his wife and daughters, playing with his grandchildren, and loved relaxing, gardening, and sharing homemade meals and family celebrations in his home. David will be missed beyond measure by his family and friends.
A special thank you to all the doctors and nurses who have lovingly cared for David throughout the years, as well as David’s close friends and extended family who supported him during this time.
David’s celebration of life will be held Friday, December 15, at First Baptist Church, 212 East F Street, Elizabethton, Tenn. Visitation will be from 4 to 6 p.m. with the service to follow immediately after. In lieu of flowers, his family requests donations be made to youth and children’s programs at First Baptist Church in his honor. Roll Tide!

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