Doug Turley Obituary, Doug Turley has passed away unexpectedly
- by Michael Agba
Doug Turley Obituary, Death – Doug Turley, the coordinator of AlphaNet, passed away on November 22, 2022. We relay this news with deep grief. Doug joined AlphaNet in December 2000 and committed over 22 years to supporting the Alpha-1 community. Doug felt strongly about providing freshly diagnosed Alphas with the same instruction and reassurance he received from his own AlphaNet Coordinator. Doug became the inaugural Coordinator of REACH, AlphaNet’s health management program for Alphas who do not require augmentation therapy, in 2014, and is credited for registering the program’s first 120 participants.
“Doug was an exceptional individual and an exceptional AlphaNet Coordinator. I first met him over two decades ago when he was hired to join the newly established AlphaNet Disease Management Program. He quickly rose to the position of leading Coordinator due to his compassion and extraordinarily comprehensive knowledge of Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency and its therapy. During a trip to Ireland for the Alpha-1 International Patient Congress in Dublin, when the patients planned a one-week bus tour of the Emerald Isle, I got to know him on a more personal level. Doug was accompanied by his young adult daughter, and it was wonderful to see him in a more social setting and in excellent health following a lung transplant.
Doug asked the most essential, in-depth questions during trainings and weekly conference calls; he was never content until he thoroughly comprehended a topic. Then he would apply that information to help other Coordinators and his subscribers. Dr. Robert A. Sandhaus, vice president and senior medical director of AlphaNet, described Doug’s death as a shock and a source of tremendous sorrow for the many Alphas and others in the Alpha-1 community who knew and loved him. After being diagnosed with emphysema in the early 1990s, Doug was diagnosed with Alpha-1 at the age of 41. Doug’s surgeon checked his medical records prior to his hernia operation and expressed amazement that a man of his age was experiencing such severe lung problems.
Doug’s surgeon requested permission to run a blood test, and in 1997 he was diagnosed with Alpha-1. Shortly following his diagnosis, Doug became a subscriber to the AlphaNet program. He saw the importance of remaining updated about Alpha-1 and being able to regularly communicate with a fellow Alpha, and he credits his personal AlphaNet Coordinator, Dick Bueker, for motivating him to apply to become a Coordinator himself. In 2003, Doug elected to undergo a lung transplant at Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, due to the progression of his lung condition. Doug elected to remain at AlphaNet as Coordinator despite the fact that he was able to return to his prior employment due to the success of his transplant. He felt compelled to help Alphas navigate their health through information and education.
“In 2002, Doug was my very first AlphaNet Coordinator. As is the case with many Alphas, I was apprehensive about beginning augmentation therapy. Doug was a great listener and a wealth of knowledge. He was able to respond to all of my concerns and queries. He was always accessible to answer any queries I had as my Alpha-1 journey progressed. I will never forget meeting him for the first time at the 2005 Minneapolis Education Day. It was a fantastic opportunity to meet my AlphaNet Coordinator in person for the first time. For me, he remained the unique individual who assisted me during a difficult and stressful period of my life. Doug will be much missed by all of us,” stated Peg Iverson, program manager for AlphaNet.
Doug operated multiple businesses before to joining AlphaNet, including a bakery, grocery shop, restaurant, clothes store, and pharmacy. He was a professional baker for more than 15 years and remained a passionate baker long after changing careers. Doug enjoyed literature, movies, music, computers, and spending time with his family and ex-AlphaNet Board member wife Bonnie. Doug adored animals, and they loved him in return. Doug and Bonnie met for the first time at the Alpha-1 National Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, and their chemistry was so strong that other attendees believed they were already married. They were connected at the hip from the moment they met, albeit figuratively for a period as Doug resided in Kansas and Bonnie lived in Boston. In the end, he relocated to Boston to be with Bonnie.
Doug Turley Obituary, Death – Doug Turley, the coordinator of AlphaNet, passed away on November 22, 2022. We relay this news with deep grief. Doug joined AlphaNet in December 2000 and committed over 22 years to supporting the Alpha-1 community. Doug felt strongly about providing freshly diagnosed Alphas with the same instruction and reassurance he…