Gene Turley was a fan of the Green Bay Packers.  When he was a little boy, he asked his dad what the G on the helmets stood for.  “Gene,” replied his father.  Gene’s best friend was a cousin who was a Vikings fan (as am I).  His cousin called me yesterday to share the sad news of Gene’s passing.  It had been expected but was still a shock.

The man also liked riding motorcycles.  It was an accident on his bike that ultimately led to his death, which happened as he was surrounded by family.  He lost the real love of his life during the pandemic.  I like to believe they’re now happily reunited.

People who knew him all talk about his legendary kindness.  It served him well in law enforcement, and then later as Twin Falls County Coroner.  When a neighbor of mine died alone in his home, Gene was there to offer comfort to the family.  I was a witness.

A few years ago he invited me over for a Packers/Vikings game.  I declined.  Not because I wanted to disappoint him.  When I told Gene we wouldn’t be friends by halftime, he got a big laugh.

Some people live long lives and accomplish little.  Gene lived a short life and accomplished much.

I never saw him in a boxing ring but was told he could’ve turned professional and had a successful career.  His amateur record was stellar.  When he was young, he also dreamed of playing for the Packers.  Wouldn’t it be great if Heaven had a football team?

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