Dr. Albert J. Turbessi, 84, of Chautauqua Institute, Chautauqua, N.Y. and formerly of Warren, PA., died Sunday, July 21, 2019 in Clearwater, Florida, surrounded by is family.
Albert, or Al, as friends called him was born June 8, 1935 to Umberto and Caroline Turbessi. He grew up in Scranton, Pennsylvania, with his parents and two younger brothers, Ernie and Joe Turbessi. He was the first of his family to attend college graduating from Duquesne University in 1958 and becoming a Pharmacist. He subsequently attended the West Virginia School of Medicine graduating in 1965 with his doctorate in medicine. Following the completion of his residency in 1967, he started his medical practice in Warren, PA where he practiced family medicine for 40 years. Dr. Turbessi was a former president of the Warren YMCA and was instrumental in getting the present YMCA built. He was a member of Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church. He was also a former President of the Warren County Medical Society, Chief of Medicine at Warren General Hospital, a member of the Conewango Club, and was a Major in the US Army Reserves.
Albert married the love of his life, Barbara Champion, in 1959 to whom he was married for 60 years. They had three children, Lisa Turbessi of Charlotte NC who is married to Paul Caleca, Mark Turbessi of Tavernier, FL who is married to Eileen Turbessi and John Turbessi of Land O’ Lakes, FL who is married to Alicia Turbessi.
Firmly rooting himself in the community, “Dr. T” became known for his compassion and friendliness, taking all the time needed to listen to each patients’ concerns and provide counsel. While his personal methods made chaos of his schedule, he was usually forgiven because he gave everyone the same care and attention.
A man of many talents, Al was probably best known for his big smile, engaging sense of humor and general positive outlook on life. He loved living and raising his family in Warren where his fabled Christmas decorations were renowned as much as his reputation as a doctor, if not more so. Al was an avid golfer and a long time member of the Conewango Valley Country Club where he particularly enjoyed playing on Thursdays with his regular foursome. A patron of the arts, Al became a prolific painter and opera enthusiast and was often seen enjoying both at the Chautauqua Institute in NY. Al loved to travel and did so as much as possible, often with unplanned adventures along the way, always with Barbara at his side. An enthusiastic chef, Al’s tools of choice were the grill and pasta maker, becoming a master of beer can chicken and homemade ravioli and cappelletti his family raved about. No holiday meal was complete without the Turbessi ravioli and cappelletti.
More recently, Albert’s favorite memories were spent with his grandchildren. Albert loved and cherished his seven grandchildren, Katya Caleca, Maia Caleca, Andre Caleca, Robert Turbessi, Zane Turbessi, Daniella Turbessi and John Alberto Turbessi who all affectionately called him Pop-Pop. Guilty of buying them ice cream before dinner, he passed down his penchant for dessert while simultaneously encouraging them to play pranks on their parents and to participate in general merry making. According to his grandchildren, Pop-Pop’s hugs and infectious belly-laugh cured everything, particularly when accompanied by sweets and trips to the dollar store.
Above everything, Al enjoyed life and always saw the glass as more than half full. Through his life and actions, he inspired those around him to reach for their dreams and have faith that things would always work out. In his children and grandchildren Al instilled a passion for travel, love of family, and the value of gathering together (usually around meals) to share stories and lively conversation. He is forever loved and will be greatly missed by all of his family.
Friends may call at the Donald E. Lewis Funeral Home, Inc., 304 East Street, Warren, PA., on Sunday, July 28, 2019 from 4 to 6 P.M.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted at St. Joseph R.C. Church, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, West, Warren, PA. on Monday, July 29, 2019 at 10:00 A.M. with Fr. Richard Tomasone, Pastor, officiating. Interment will be in Chautauqua Cemetery, Chautauqua, N.Y. E-mail condolences may be sent by visiting www.lewisfuneralhomeinc.com
Our sincere sympathy to all of his family. He will be missed by a legion of people. He was our doctor from the start when we got married in 1968. He always joked with our sons when they came to the office. Such a wonderful man and doctor. Sending our prayers.
Barb, you and the kids have my deepest sympathy. Dr. T was awesome. I think that says it all. I started going to him as a 16 year old, and I adored him. He always took whatever time I needed when I saw him and he never made you feel rushed. He was a family friend along with being my Dr. He will be missed by so many people.
Barb, We were sorry to read of Al’s passing. We often speak of our times at Conewango and the golf tournaments that Al and Lanny played in. While we haven’t had contact with you since our move to Nevada, we enjoyed the times we spent together. With sincere condolences to you and your family. Lanny and Marie Sheffield
To Barb and Family. We are so sorry to read of Al’s passing. We had heard he was in poor health recently. He was an excellent physician and even better friend and colleague and not just because he was my doctor. He was truly one of the “good guys.” Wish we could have touched base somewhere along the line after we left the Warren area and renewed acquaintances. May God grant him eternal life and happiness for a life well lived. Frank and Honey Stroker, North Port, FL
Dear Barbara , Al was a favorite student in my watercolor work shops. He painted well. shared generously and rejoiced in the moment. Peace to you. Rita Argen Auerbach
Dear Barb; Kay and i only knew Big AL for a short time after we became your neighbors on Hazlett. The above short Bio says it all; his smile, his humor , his positive life outlook were immediately evident as He and you welcomed us to our new Chautauqua home. I can hear his booming & infectious laugh on your back deck as i remember his hosting us and others as new friends. You Barb, along with Big AL have clearly had your recent challenges and long medical saga road….please know Kay and i send our thoughts and best wishes to you and your family.
Sal & Kay Marranca /Chautauqua
Barb, so sorry for your loss. Dr AL was the best. You and Dr AL are always there for family and friends. You and Dr AL are the testament to the America dream,hard work and raising a great family will bring great rewards. I hope you find comfort knowing that you and Dr AL have touched many hearts in life’s journey.
I have fond memories of Dr. Turbessi. He was my family Physician for years and when my daughter was born I chose him to care for her as well. He always made me feel like she was the most beautiful kid he’d ever seen and always made us feel calm and comfortable. He took it upon himself to administer shots, sparing his wonderful nurses from the task. My Mother was a registered nurse and also loved and admired him. I’m proud to say my family had the pleasure of being in his company.
Dear Barb & family,
We are sorry to hear of Al’s passing. We send our condolences & hugs to all of you.
Judy & Elliot
Barbara, Alfred sounds like he was a wonderful person- I’m sorry I never met him. I love the joy in this obituary; it tells me what a special family you have. Please know I’m thinking of you.
Dr. Al was a wonderful man who did so much for the Warren community. He will always be remembered for his humanity and giving spirit. I have fond memories of working with him and Barb. Rest in peace, Dr. Al.
I am saddened by the passing of Dr turbessi he was our phisan for all our family ,being a nice man also proved to make him a good dr.myself and Luella send thoughts of comfort your way,to your family
Jim and Luella slack
Our condolences to the Turbessi family. Dr. Turbessi
was a kind, compassionate physician.
Dick and Jackie Slagle
Fly high Al !!! It was a pleasure to have Doc as my Physician most of my life, and an even bigger honor to be able to care for him for years at the Green !! Free at last, Free at last !!!
Barb, I am so sorry for your and your family’s loss. Al sounds like an incredible man –smart, fun, caring and giving. No wonder you loved him. I’m sending you healing wishes…Cheryl
Dr. Turbessi was my family doctor for years and I often tell people how kind and sensitive he was to me. He helped me through some very difficult times that I might not have gotten through so easily without his support. My sincere condolences to his family. I’m sure he will be greatly missed my many people.
I worked with Dr. T. as a newly graduated RN at Warren General in the 80’s. He was very kind and nurturing. I will remember him fondly. Rest in peace Dr. T.
Deepest sympathy to the Turbessi family. My parents just loved his bedside manners and compassionate care. My parents Joe and Anna lived to be 84 and 91. Many thanks for being their doctor.
We had just moved to Warren in 1967 when i got tonsillitis. He made a house call & told my parents i did not need a tonsillectomy. I recovered & still have my tonsils. Thank you Dr Turbessi.