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Janet Louise Turbyne Ahern

Janet Louise Turbyne Ahern

Janet Louise Turbyne Ahern brought her sweet melody into the lives of parents Clara and James A. Turbyne on February 22, 1941 in East Orange, NJ. She left us on May 23 with her grandchild's music in her ears. She leaves a wake of song. From those early years as her choral teacher's favorite at Grover Cleveland High School in Caldwell, New Jersey to the final lessons she taught to her grandchildren as they prepared for auditions, she has left a legacy of music that will not be forgotten. She began her formal vocal studies with Donald Gage of the Metropolitan Opera. She graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, received an artist's certificate from the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, achieved her Masters of Music at Northwestern University, and taught vocal music, music appreciation and opera workshop for 32 years at University of Minnesota-Morris. She was affiliated with Pi Kappa Lambda, National Association of the Teachers of Singing and the National Opera Association. She had solo appearances with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. She sang in church choirs her whole life, including her beloved Hubbard United Methodist Choir. She also sang in the Park Rapids Classic Chorale.Janet was a gifted and adored teacher. She taught private lessons to young people as well as mentored hundreds of university students en route to music careers. Her students are performers and music teachers themselves. She will always live on through the lessons they continue to share and music they create. Thousands of musicians can link their growth back to her.Janet was the kind of person who showed up and did the work that sustains communities. She served as President of the University of Minnesota-Morris Retiree's Committee and on the Board of the Northern Light Opera Company. She was actively involved on multiple committees at the Hubbard United Methodist Church, as a representative of Palmer Lake to the Hubbard County Coalition of Lake Associations, and as a volunteer in the Park Rapids community. She was also actively involved on alumni committees of Oberlin College and Conservatory. In Stevens County, Minnesota, she was a pillar of the Morris Federated Church and the University of Minnesota-Morris, where her work as Director of the UMM Commission on Women continues to result in improved working conditions for women faculty. She was also involved her whole life with 4-H, and if anyone needed a delicious pie or sublime plate of cookies, they knew they could call on her to get it done.Janet was our mother, our sister, our grandmother, our mentor, and our friend. She is survived by a brother (David Turbyne), two beautiful children (Alyson Knop and Jim Ahern), a son-in-law (Rob Knop) and daughter-in-law (Meredith McLaughlin), and three grandsons (Abijah, Rowan, and Sage Ahern) who all love music. The echo of her gifted voice will reverberate eternally both on earth and in heaven. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hubbard United Methodist Church in Janet's name. Memorial services will be held at 11 AM Saturday, June 2, 2018 at the Hubbard United Methodist Church with Reverend Laurie Kantonen officiating. Visitation will begin one hour prior to the services at the church on Saturday.