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I'm writing to remember Carla Turner to the community.
I met Carla in 2005, when she applied for the-then spanking-new Douglas County Youth Initiative. Carla's experience with a host of social work, social justice and criminal justice work was impressive. Even more impressive was her extraordinary passion and commitment to the work. Carla was a big-system thinker. She got how things connected. She had penetrating insights. And she communicated all of that with infectious enthusiasm and optimism.
Carla did great work with the Youth Initiative, then went on to great work with other causes. What some may not know was her interest in creative writing. I still have one draft of her NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) event. It was a story about a family of cannibals. Carla was positively gleeful when she talked about it. Her dedication: "The following is a retelling of an old Scottish legend. It was written with complete disregard for the truth and without the slightest attention to historical, geographical, meteorological, metallurgical, cosmetological, astronomical, grammatical, and theological accuracy." Funny, though.
It's a tragedy when we lose any loved one. Carla recently passed away, after a long battle with cancer. But throughout that ordeal, she maintained her fierce, Viking insistence that we can, and should, treat one another better. What's more, she lived it. Her loss diminishes Douglas County.
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