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Robert and Lillian Turchin appear at the opening of ASU's Turchin Center for the Visual Arts in 2003. Robert Turchin recently died at age 90. Photo courtesy of the Turchin Center.

Originally published: 2013-02-20 00:23:06
Last modified: 2013-02-20 16:37:03

ASU benefactor Robert Turchin dies

Robert L. Turchin Sr., a longtime benefactor of Appalachian State University, died Feb. 14 at age 90.

Turchin was born Feb. 22, 1922 in New York and moved with his family to Miami Beach, Fla., in 1930. He served in the U.S. Army after college graduation as a lieutenant and chief gunnery officer until the end of WWII.

After his service, Turchin developed Robert L. Turchin Inc. and built more than 100 major buildings while also serving in numerous civic roles in Miami Beach.

Turchin and his wife of 68 years, Lillian, spent much time in the North Carolina mountains and generously supported Appalachian State University. The Turchin Center for the Visual Arts is named in their honor.

Turchin also served on the ASU Board of Trustees and was a director of the ASU Foundation, his obituary states.

In 1997, he received the Appalachian Alumni Association's Outstanding Service Award. He was named an honorary alumnus of Appalachian in 2001.

"Bob was most proud of being the honorary coach of the special teams for the three-time National Championship ASU Mountaineer football team," according to his obituary.

He also supported his alma mater, Tulane University, where the baseball stadium is named for him.

A funeral service was held Feb. 17 in Florida. In addition to his wife, Turchin is survived by five children, their spouses and nine grandchildren.