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Ralph Turner



Ralph moved to Kendal at Oberlin on December 16, 1993. He remembers sharing his collection of films (“golden oldies”) and introducing popcorn to create a theater feeling. He showed all the movies the first three years, doing everything from running the films to making the popcorn, so he could provide opportunities for other residents to share his enjoyment.  


A Ph.D. psychologist, Ralph served in the Air Force and designing tests to evaluate “accident prone” airmen. He and his late wife Louise moved to Oberlin, where he taught in the Oberlin College Psychology Department and was chair from 1959 to 1970.  Ralph took retirement seriously and never went back to the College, but he still enjoys all the sciences and music, particularly jazz and big band.


Ralph started the Science Interest Group here at Kendal in the fall of 1994, meeting once a week to discuss recent scientific events and topics. “There is always a lot going on in science,” he says, “and it is fun trying to understand and predict what will be next.” He has been very committed to promoting health and encouraging folks to participate in various discussion groups.


The Jazz Listening Group, which was started by the McCorkles and Ralph, is still going strong.  He says that listening to the movies is also a good source for jazz. The range of opportunities for enjoying music here is truly outstanding.


Ralph says that our leadership has been excellent, especially our CEO Barbara Thomas.  Kendal also has some very devoted groups, like the Environmental Concerns Committee, and he praises people like John Elder, who has been key in both getting groups started and keeping them focused. He explains that Dave Clark is another individual who has been important since the very beginnings of Kendal at Oberlin, working on all levels both with his efforts through the College and on specific projects here at Kendal.


Ralph really enjoys the fact that so many residents took introductory psychology with him while they were students at Oberlin, and notes that some even moved to Kendal before he did!


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