Salathel was born on November 9, 1936 in Magnolia, Arkansas to Smead and Eula Copeland. She was the sixth child born to this union. Salathel received her education at Walker High School in Magnolia, Arkansas.
Salathel was united in marriage to Homer Lee Turner in 1955 in Magnolia. Shortly thereafter they moved to Flint, Michigan; and from this union six children were born. Salathel and Homer divorced several years later but they remained good friends until his death in 2003.
Salathel accepted Christ at an early age and was baptized at Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Magnolia.
Words that would best describe Salathel’s character are ‘Encourager’ and ‘Motivator’. She always had encouraging and uplifting words for young and old, especially young people - expressing to them the importance of staying in school and striving to do their very best in all they do.
Salathel moved to Chicago, Illinois in the mid-60s. After arriving in Chicago, she worked various jobs as a: factory assembly worker, waitress, bartender, hotel housekeeper and precinct election judge. It was during this time that she met Ulysses “Buddy” Williams. She and “Buddy” were united in marriage in 1986 and from this union one child was born.
Salathel was a good conversationalist and a very good listener. You always knew you had her undivided attention when you talked with her. She was outgoing, friendly and personable; and she liked meeting people. She had style, class, sass and spunk; and we all know she was definitely the ‘Prima Donna’ of the Copeland girls.
Salathel loved and always showed great concern for her children and siblings. She enjoyed traveling to California, Michigan, Texas and Arkansas to visit them. She never hesitated in keeping the lines of communication open between her and her family. After years of living in Chicago, she was blessed to move back to Magnolia, Arkansas in 2004.
Salathel departed this life on June 16, 2011 in Texarkana, Arkansas. Her presence will be truly missed by everyone who loved her. She was preceded in death by her son: Tracy, her husband: Ulysses, her parents: Smead and Eula, two brothers: James and Clarence, four sisters: Mattie, Jeweline, Nora and Jimmie, and one granddaughter: LaShonda.
She leaves to cherish her memory two daughters: Olivia (Cisco) Rodriguez of Dallas, TX and Sharon (James) Johnson of Flint, MI, six sons: Alphonso Turner of Flint, MI, Christopher Turner of Magnolia, AR, Jerone Turner of Dallas TX, Anthony Turner of Flint MI, Jerry Wafer of Chicago IL and Lemart Turner-Williams of Magnolia AR, one brother: Donald (Anne) Copeland of San Antonio, TX, two sisters-in-law: Thelma Copeland of Houston, TX and Gussie Williams of New Jersey, one brother-in-law: Therman Thornton of Magnolia, AR; nine grandchildren; fourteen great-grandchildren; one step-son: Glenn Williams of Galveston, TX; and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. A special young lady, Lisa Perry, who was like a daughter in-law to her, one-step grandchild: Vanessa Lynn Perry and three special friends: Sally Cooper, Annie Cornelius, and Gloria West of Chicago, IL.