Robert Alan Turley, known to most as Alan, died on Monday, April 5, 2021 in Santa Barbara. He was born on Sept. 2, 1957 to Betty Lou and Hobart Turley in Los Angeles County.
He lived much of his life in the Santa Barbara community, where he spent many of his working years. Whether it was assisting with home improvement projects, caring for a ranch in Santa Ynez, or cooking for a local shelter, he loved to work and spoke of these experiences fondly.
In 2002, Alan sustained a traumatic brain injury after being hit by a drunk driver. He lost the ability to work due to the cognitive and physical impacts of his injury; he ultimately became homeless.
In 2012, Alan found Jodi House, a local nonprofit program for brain injury survivors. He began attending the program every day and took every class offered. He was the first one to arrive each morning and would carefully tend to the ailing garden box while he waited for the doors to open.
On any given day at Jodi House, you could hear Alan’s booming laugh no matter where you were in the house — and he laughed often. Every holiday, he would bring Reese’s candies to share, and always made sure to bring dog treats for the faithful companions of staff and members.
Alan worked hard toward achieving many of his recovery goals – just this past year, he had even secured stable housing after years of homelessness.
Alan was open about his experiences, often expressing how outside of Jodi House living with a disability and being homeless made him feel invisible to the rest of the world. But Alan was far from invisible to those who had the privilege of knowing him as the nurturing friend and teacher he was to all.
He learned to live with his challenges, never believing that they meant he could not live a meaningful and important life — and that he most certainly did. He will be dearly missed.
A memorial service at Jodi House will be announced when large gatherings can safely resume. Online tributes to Alan can be shared at www.alanturley.remembered.com.