Surrounded by her family, Collette Marie Banks-Turner passed away at her home and was welcomed into heaven on July 4, 2022 following a brief battle with cancer. Collette was born in Merced, Calif., to Cecil E. (Pop) and Gloria N. Jones-Banks on June 11, 1954 as the third child in a family of eight; she is survived by her siblings Nannette (Michael) Sutter, Ed (Daria) Banks, Suzzette (David) Norris, Claudette (Brian) Lee, Babbette (Frank) Tyler, Paulette (Bil) Donnelly, and John (Denice) Banks. Collette graduated from Westmont High School in San Jose in 1972 and continued her education, earning two degrees at Merced College and her BA in early childhood development with honors at Fresno Pacific University.
In 1980, she married her Prince Charming, Jonathan F. Turner. She leaves behind her greatest gifts in children Jesse (Halle), Bryce, and Kyle (Kamrin, who will miss her Bonus Mom); and her seven joys in grandchildren Julia, Ella, Mia, Skye, Finley, Hope, and Rowan. They will greatly miss their grandma, “Meemaw,” and her many nieces and nephews will also miss their “Auntie CoCo.” Collette worked for Merced County Oﬃce of Education, Mariposa County Oﬃce of Education, Merced College, and UC Merced in roles that positively impacted the lives of the many children she interacted with. She was a loving, compassionate and gifted teacher, providing a caring learning environment for all. Collette also served as the caregiver for Edith Turner, her mother- in-law, in her final years.
Collette was a dedicated servant of God and a strong patriot of this country. She connected with Yosemite Church in Merced and became a valued Coﬀee Break prayer warrior. She also attended The Well in Modesto. Collette was active in the V.F.W. Auxiliary in Mariposa, and was a two-star Army mom. The happiest place on Earth was anywhere her husband, children and grandchildren were. She especially enjoyed Disneyland, multiple trips to Europe and music concerts. Collette’s family sends its gratitude and thanks to Global Hospice of Modesto for the quality and passionate care received. Thank you to the many friends and family members who also took time to be with Collette in her final days. The love was truly felt.
A 10 a.m. graveside service is planned for Collette on July 16, 2022, at Catheys Valley Cemetery in Catheys Valley, Calif. A celebration of life will follow at the McCay Hall in Catheys Valley.