Turowski Life Story Funeral Homes are the exclusive provider of the Life Story Experience.
The first Turowski Funeral Home was established in 1919 at 23rd st. and Myrtle on Detroit's west side by Joseph F. Turowski. In 1955, his son, Leonard A. Turowski, Sr., opened a new funeral home at 19400 Joy Rd. in Detroit. Continuing in the family tradition, Leonard A. Turowski, Jr. joined with his father in 1973 and purchased the L.A. Turowski & Son Funeral Home in Livonia. In 1986, the Turowski Family obtained ownership of the former Harvey A. Neely Funeral Home in Livonia, which later became the Neely-Turowski Funeral Home.
In 1996, the Pawlus Funeral Home was purchased in Canton. Following a complete expansion and renovation it was renamed the Neely-Turowski Funeral Home. Todd N. Turowski, the son of Leonard A. Turowski, Jr., obtained his licensure in 1999, making him the fourth generation funeral director in the Turowski family. In the spirit of service to families for four generations, we believe that our relationship with clients begins long before a death occurs and continues for as long as you need support.
Todd N. TurowskiFuneral Director
It was a Friday evening in March of 1990, Todd was in the 8th grade at St. Michael Catholic School in Livonia. When his Dad (Leonard Jr.) came home from the funeral home that day, he asked Todd if he would like to come to work with him the next day. From that Saturday on, Todd has done everything in the funeral home. From pulling weeds, trimming bushes, sweeping driveways, cleaning bathrooms, washing cars etc. to arranging and directing funerals as a licensed funeral director today.
Todd is a proud graduate of Detroit Catholic Central High School class of 1994. On top of receiving a top-notch education, Todd enjoyed playing football and was a member of the ski team. Amongst playing with great football teams in his four years of high school, in 1992 the Shamrocks were lucky enough to win the Division 1 State Championship. You may even catch him wearing his state championship ring around the funeral home from time to time, especially if he is caring for the family of a fellow alum.
After hanging up his helmet and cleats, Todd went on to attend Michigan State University. While in college, Todd was a member of the Kappa Sigma Fraternity. As a member of the fraternity, Todd served on the executive board as the treasurer and cultivated many life long friendships. In his sophomore year at MSU, Todd met his future wife, Shelby, who is from Grand Haven and also attended Michigan State. With all the social activities college presents, it is a bit amazing that Shelby and Todd actually met in a classroom.
After graduation in 1998, Todd moved back home to Livonia and prepared to attend Wayne State University’s School of Mortuary Science. During mortuary school, he also worked a lot with his Dad at the funeral home. His brain was like a sponge, watching and listening to everything his Dad said and did. Todd asked a million and one questions over the course of the next year and a half. He was also very fortunate to work with his Grandfather, Leonard Sr. from time to time. The two of them would direct a funeral together than always go out for lunch. You could just see the pride in his Grandfather’s eyes as he was witnessing his legacy continuing on into another generation.
In the late summer of 1999, Todd graduated with honors from Wayne State University. Then shortly after graduation he completed the National and State board exams and was a licensed funeral director working side by side with his Dad as the 4th generation.
Shelby and Todd married a few years later at St John Neumann Catholic Church in Canton. After having some fun and freedom for a few years just enjoying being together, the two decided to expand the family. They now live in Livonia and have two boys, Brayden 6 and Camren 4. Two boys, two years apart keeps them busy, to say the least. Brayden is following his Dad’s path and attending St. Michael Catholic School in Livonia. Camren will catch up in a couple years. As a family, they enjoy many outdoor activities including anything and everything on the water in the summer time and skiing and snowmobiling in the winter.
Todd is also active in the community. He is a member of the Livonia Rotary Club, Livonia Chamber of Commerce and the Canton Chamber of Commerce. He has served on the board of directors of both the Canton Chamber and the St. Mary Mercy Hospital advisory board. Todd looks forward to serving on the board of directors of the Livonia Rotary Club this coming year where he has come to realize the importance of “service above self”.
After being 13 or so years removed from college, Todd still enjoys funeral service as much as he did as a 14year old boy. He learns something new everyday and takes that knowledge to help people through a difficult time. Todd explains, “it is important to not only grieve the loss of a loved one but also to share the life that was lived and the memories made. This is where Life Story Network becomes so important. During our lives we make new memories everyday, some days more than others. Everyone has a story. We help you share and cherish those memories now and for generations to come.”
“Most funeral homes dwell on death and caskets, Life Story Funeral Homes thrive on life and memories.”
-Todd N. Turowski
Leonard A. Turowski Jr.Funeral Director
Growing up in Detroit, the front door of my house was the back door of the funeral home. Just as my parents and grandparents, I lived in the upstairs apartment. Funeral service has always been part of our family life. As a young boy, I would be found directing the deliveries of flowers, caskets and the various necessities needed to run the business. Saturdays were spent washing cars, pulling weeds and doing general maintenance.
Promoted to Funeral Director Assistant in the college years, I worked individually with families .It was then I began to understand that funeral service was not only the physical preparation for the end of life but an integral part of grieving. Studying the emotional layers of the grief has been an ongoing process .
1973 was an inspirational year. I became a Funeral Director in the spring and a married man in the fall. Just as my parents and grandparents before, my wife Vicki and I moved into the funeral home apartment. We moved several years later into our own home to raise our daughter and three sons. They too spent many summers helping out at the family business.
My involvement with the Michigan Funeral Directors Association, resulted in a Presidential position in 1981. Ingrained in our community, I enjoy being involved in organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club. Hearts of Livonia, Knights of Columbus, various church organizatons, and serving on the advisory board of Providence Hospital.
Then one day, as life evolves, my eldest son Todd came to work with me, washing cars, pulling weeds and doing general maintenance. Funeral service became his career choice and he was licensed in 1999. He is the fourth generation of our family in funeral service. Together we serve our families and communities with two Livonia based funeral homes and our Canton location.
Robert T. BerteauFuneral Director
Rob is proud to have joined the Turowski Family Funeral Homes in 2011, coming to Michigan from Ohio. While working in Ohio Rob gained valuable experience which has served him well in all facets of funeral service and of life in general.
Rob considers it a “lucky break” that early in his college years a friend introduced him to a funeral director, Anthony Ripepi, Jr., in Cleveland, OH. Rob, who was from Parma, OH about 15 minutes south of Cleveland, soon ended up working for Anthony. Rob worked there during college and in the process discovered he liked the funeral profession and that he was well suited for it with his personality and work ethic.
In the beginning Rob worked part-time while he was a student at Kent State. He washed cars, delivered flowers, and did maintenance work at the funeral home—all along gaining insight into the life and work of a funeral director. All this while he was playing hockey and hosting a radio show at the University. Eventually he took a full-time position at Ripepi’s and that’s when Rob’s interest in becoming a licensed funeral director really took hold.
In addition to working full-time at Ripepi’s Rob also pursued his mortuary science degree. First at Cuyahoga Community College and then at the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. He graduated from Cincinnati in 1996 with a Bachelor’s Degree and soon after became a licensed funeral director and embalmer in the state of Ohio. And since 2011, Rob is also licensed in Michigan.
Then, in 1998, another “lucky break” came along for Rob . . . when he met his soul mate and the love of his life, Gina Narducci. Gina and Rob were married in 2002 and now have three beautiful children—Anthony, Alexis, and Lilyanna.
In addition to funeral service Rob has an exceptional interest in hockey. In fact, it’s what brought him to Michigan. Rob started playing hockey at age five and hasn’t stopped since. As a boy, his Cleveland Americans team won the prestigious International Silver Stick. At Padua Franciscan High School in Parma, OH his hockey team was state runner-up—which led to a two week trip to Europe where he visited Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.
Now, as the father of a young hockey player, Rob devotes his spare time to being a referee and a USA Hockey Level 4 Certified Coach. Like his dad, Rob and Gina’s son, Anthony, hit the ice at an early age—four to be exact. When Anthony was 14 Rob moved his family to Detroit so Anthony could play AAA level hockey. Along with young Anthony, the family has traveled to many places for tournaments and championships including Edmonton and Quebec. Rob and Gina and family live in Canton, MI where Anthony and Alexis both attend school. In addition to work, family, and hockey Rob enjoys golf and being a 32nd degree Mason.
Just as Rob values his own family, he knows other families value theirs the same way. He knows every life is special and every life has a story, and that sharing people’s stories and preserving memories are important to do at the end of life. Rob says, “Stories and memories are the fabric of life after all, the very thing that connects us one to another.”