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FLINTSTONE, Ga. — Sam Turner, convenience store industry icon and former NACS Chairman, passed away at his home on Nov. 10. He was 71.
Turner was born and raised in Chattanooga, Tenn., and graduated from the University of Chattanooga in 1969. After working in the banking industry for several years, Turner became chief financial officer and eventually CEO at Calfee Co. He went on to lead Dalton, Ga.-based Favorite Market/ComPac convenience stores as president and CEO from 1981 to 2010 and co-founded Enzo's market in downtown Chattanooga in 2013.
Turner was a past chairman of the Georgia Association of Convenience Store Owners, was inducted into the Food Industry Hall of Fame, and served on the boards of the Petroleum Convenience Marketers of Alabama and the Tennessee Oil Marketers Association, according to NACS, the Association for Convenience & Fuel Retailing. In 2006-2007, Turner served as NACS chairman, where he was actively engaged in legislative activities.
Turner was known for his focus on keeping his employees happy.
"It's an exciting business, and it's something new every day…I'm never bored," Turner said of his favorite parts of his job. "It makes me feel good when I get up every morning…just knowing I am doing something that I enjoy."
Turner is preceded in death by his parents and his wife, Verina S. Baxter. He is survived by his children Wendy Turner (Chris Loga) of Marietta, Ga.; Samuel P. Turner of Sacramento, Calif.; and Eadress Baxter.
A memorial and visitation took place Nov. 14 at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Chattanooga.
In lieu of flowers, Turner's family requests donations in his memory to ArtsBuild, 301 E. 11th Street, Suite 300, Chattanooga, Tenn., 37403, or to the Hunter Museum of American Art, 10 Bluff View Ave., Chattanooga, Tenn., 37403, reported the Chattanooga Times Free Press.