Palo Alto Online - Lasting Memories - George Stanley Turnbull's memorial

George Stanley Turnbull
Sept. 10, 1929-Jan. 11, 2024
Los Altos, California

George Stanley (Stan) Turnbull Jr., 94, passed away on January 11th at his assisted living residence in Los Altos, CA. after a brief illness. He was born on September 10th, 1929, in Eugene, Oregon to parents George and Mary Lou Turnbull.

By his own account, Stan lived a happy and idyllic childhood in Eugene, where he and his friends enjoyed the college town and often sneaked into University of Oregon sporting events. He attended Eugene High School, where he was editor of the school newspaper. He followed the family tradition of journalism, graduating from the University of Oregon’s school of journalism, of which his father was a founding member, and his mother a graduate. After University, he spent two years in the US Army during the Korean War, stationed in Kentucky, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Colorado. He returned to academia after the army to obtain his master’s degree in journalism from Stanford University.

His first professional job was for the Wall Street Journal, initially in San Francisco, and later in Los Angeles. He found that he preferred San Francisco and relocated back, eventually taking a job in the advertising and publicity department at PG&E. He had a fulfilling 30+ year career with PG&E, retiring as Director of Publications and Editor of PG&E Progress. After retiring, Stan did freelance editing and took on responsibility for producing his church newsletter for many years.

While living and working in San Francisco, Stan met and fell in love with a fellow UO journalism graduate, Laura Sturges. They married in 1957 and had two children who were raised in San Francisco and later Palo Alto. They enjoyed a 29 year marriage.

In 1989, at the age of 59, Stan was remarried to Jane Hughes, who ignited and encouraged in him a passion for the outdoors and travel that spanned their 20 year union. With Jane, Stan enjoyed hiking and cross-country skiing with friends all over the country, as well as travel to Borneo, Peru, Patagonia, The Baltics, St. Petersburg, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.. He continued to enjoy travel after her passing in 2008.

Stan was an avid Anglophile, and visited London and England many times. With longtime companion Jan Thompson, Stan continued to travel, including taking a riverboat cruise on the Rhine and Danube rivers, houseboating on Lake Powell, attending plays in Ashland, Oregon, as well as taking in local music, plays, and Stanford and 49er football games.

He spent 50+ years as a Ham Radio enthusiast, building his own receivers and transmitters. He was an avid reader, with an impressive home library. A decades-long season ticket holder of the San Francisco Opera and Symphony, he was passionate about classical music. He also loved singing, starting in the high school choir and continuing in musical theater and church choirs as an adult.

Stan was an unapologetic “punster” and, despite this, regaled his friends and family with his infectious sense of humor, which he maintained until his final days. He continued reading and joking until the end, and never missed an opportunity to tell his friends and family how much he loved them. He will be dearly missed, and we cherish the many wonderful memories and laughs we shared with him.

He is survived by his children Steve Turnbull (Jenifer) of Palo Alto, Diana Turnbull of Napa, 3 grandchildren, and longtime companion Jan Thompson of Los Altos. He is predeceased by his first wife Laura Sturges, second wife Jane Hughes, and sister Sarah L. Johnson.

A private celebration of life will be held in March. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication.

Tags: arts/media, business

0 entries Submit a remembrance
Make a donation

About this site     Contact us