Elizabeth “Betty” Turton Gaffney November 14, 1942 - April 6, 2019

Elizabeth “Betty” Turton Gaffney, age 76, of Carbondale, IL passed away on Saturday, April 6, 2019, at Pisgah Manor in Candler, NC.

Betty is survived by her husband Gerald Gaffney of Makanda, IL; her sister Barbara McCoy of Bonita Springs, FL; her children, Molly Gaffney-Keebler and her husband Joseph Keebler of Asheville, NC, Michael and his wife Julie Gaffney of Santa Rosa Beach, FL, Brandon Walker of Kansas City, MO, and Matthew and his wife Kendra Gaffney of Asheville, NC; and four grandchildren, Samantha and Jack Keebler and Bailey and Max Gaffney. She is preceded in death by her parents, Lyle and Berta Mae Turton; and sister, Jeanne Kaase.

Betty was born in St. Louis, MO on November 14, 1942 to Lyle and Berta Mae Turton and raised in Murphysboro, IL. Betty received her nursing degree from St. Mary’s School of Nursing in Evansville, IN, her bachelor’s degree in occupational education from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and her MSN in nursing administration from Bellarmine College in Louisville, KY.

Betty’s career in healthcare began in 1963 when she was a staff nurse in the emergency department at St. Joseph Memorial Hospital. From 1967-71, Betty was an instructor in the licensed practical nursing program for the Vocational Technical Institute in Carbondale. From 1971-73, she worked at Doctors Memorial Hospital (now Memorial Hospital of Carbondale) as an obstetrical nurse. She returned to St. Joseph Hospital in 1973 as director of in-service education and became director of patient care services in 1977. In 1995 Betty was named senior vice president of Southern Illinois Healthcare and administrator of St. Joseph Memorial Hospital and remained in that role until her retirement.

A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, May 10, 2019 from 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm at the Garden Grove Event Center 1215 E. Walnut Street Carbondale, IL 62901. In lieu of flowers, we ask memorials be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research www.michaeljfox.org.

Leave a Condolence


  1. John Palmer says

    Our prayers are with the Gaffney family. We met in kindergarten. Enjoyed the experience of being a classmate with her during grade school and high school. She was a very thoughtful person.

  2. Mike Haseker says

    Prayers for Betty’s family! She was such a good
    Person. She was the administrator the last few years I was there. She had a calming effect on everyone she met. Heaven gained an angel. RIP Betty.