The AFLUA is saddened to learn of the passing of former member Mark Turner.
Having suffered a debilitating back injury playing junior football, aged 16, Mark endured a series of operations and long recovery, which makes his athletic achievements remarkable.
Taking up boundary umpiring with AFLQ in 1998 after having played junior football, he was coaxed down to training by former police colleague and AFL goal umpire Glen Dryburgh, who knew of Turner’s athletic and football background.
In 1999, Mark was offered an AFL contract – an outstanding achievement given the time he had spent in the game. Early season injury delayed his taking up the offer, though he still ran the AFLQ Grand Final that year.
Debuting on 8 April 2000 at The Gabba, Mark was an AFL boundary umpire from 2000-2004 and umpired 53 AFL matches. All but one was at the Gabba, the other venue being the Melbourne Cricket Ground. He was awarded Heritage No. 494.
From 2016-2017, he took on the role of state umpiring manager in Queensland.
A long-term tri-athlete, Mark was heavily involved in coaching. Among other roles, he served as the head coach for Triathlon Scotland throughout the 2019-2020 season.
More recently the owner of World Multisport, Mark passed away on 17 December 2022, aged 52.
Written by: David Flegg AM (AFLUA Historian/Statistician)
Images AFLQ and Taranaki Daily News