Paying tribute: Kerry, RyLee and Kash Turner ride their horses in front of the land cruiser with the casket of her husband and their father Alex Turner at his Celebration of Life at the Warwick Showgrounds yesterday.
Paying tribute: Kerry, RyLee and Kash Turner ride their horses in front of the land cruiser with the casket of her husband and their father Alex Turner at his Celebration of Life at the Warwick Showgrounds yesterday.

Family rides at farewell to Alex

A CROWD of more than 500 lined the fence of the Warwick Showgrounds arena yesterday to farewell rodeo and campdraft star Alex Turner.

There were tears in the eyes of some of the toughest bushmen in Australia as Alex’s wife Kerry, daughter RyLee, 5, and son Kash, 3, rode their horses in front of a Toyota Land Cruiser carrying the casket of the 34-year-old from Aratula who was killed in a farming accident on May 2.

Alex’s casket was covered with small bits of bush timber and his dog Smack sat on the back throughout the service.

The service was conducted by rodeo evangelist Tim Kelly, of Kingaroy.

The campdraft pegs were set up in the arena as if the first rider at the annual Warwick Rodeo was in the camp.

To start the Celebration of Life, dual Warwick Gold Cup winner Terry Hall drove the Toyota with Alex, family members and Smack into the arena as he led Alex’s grey campdraft horse Bruce.

Alex’s other sporting love, bareback bronc riding, was then to the fore as six riders from three states put their rigging on six horses and one by one the horses from the Gill Brothers string had their easiest run in an arena.

In the eulogy, Laird Morgan went back to Alex’s school days in Glen Innes when he won a mutton buster’s ride.

Mr Morgan spoke about the way his mate could adapt to anything and his work ethic.

“He would often spend 14 to 15 hours a day in the saddle,” Mr Morgan said.

“It didn’t matter if you were a ringer, cocky or lawyer, Alex would treat you the same and give you his undivided attention with those blue eyes.

“He likes his sport, his mates and knew more people than 50 of us put together.

“He loved Kerry with all his heart and was proud of her success in sport and as a mother. Alex taught many children to ride and was besotted by his own children.”

His mother Patricia Turner spoke of her gratitude to Kerry and Alex for the gift of precious grandchildren.

“You will go on to live rich and rewarding lives,” Mrs Turner said.

Speaker after speaker told of his work ethic, a work record he set working in a feedlot and how difficult it was to keep up with him.

Before reciting the Cowboy’s Prayer, Mr Kelly finished the service with consoling words “we will all see Alex again”.



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