William F. Edwards

William F. “Turk” Edwards, age 95, passed away peacefully April 4, 2017, with his loving family by his side. 

Turk was born March 28, 1922, in Baiting Hollow. William, who acquired the name Turk as a child, married his doting wife, Elizabeth “Betty” (née Panewich) Sept. 26, 1942, in Riverhead.

As a teenager, Turk was part of the first team starting lineup of the Riverhead Royals semi-pro football team and served as a Merchant Marine in South America. Turk was a New York State trooper and retired Suffolk County Police Department detective. He was president of the Riverhead Lions Club and captain of Riverhead Walsh Engine Company. Turk served his community with pride, but first and foremost, he was a family man who found nothing more rewarding than spending weekends with his children and grandchildren.

In 1979, Turk and Betty retired and split their time between St. Petersburg, Fla. and Riverhead until 2015, when they returned to New York to live with their granddaughter, Dawn Deerkoski, her husband, Jim and their daughters. According to Turk, returning to New York to spend more time with his family was his biggest blessing.

Turk is survived by his loving wife of 74 years, Betty and son Bruce (Joanie); his six grandchildren, Tracy Polak (Greg), Dawn Deerkoski (James), Kristy Wilkinson (Brian), Peter Edwards (Keith), Becky Edwards and Bonnie Edwards (Bryan) and 11 great-grandchildren, Caitlyn, Jared, Cassidy, Kobe, Olivia, Jadyn, Jacob, Anna, Aidyn, Trey and Mason. His son Barry predeceased him in 1983.

The family will receive visitors Friday, April 7, from 5 to 8 p.m. at McLaughlin Heppner Funeral Home in Riverhead. Cremation will be private.

Memorial donations may be made to the American Heart Association.

This is a paid notice.