FARMINGTON – After 40 years with comb and scissors in hand, Junior Turner cut his last tender cut at Turner’s Tendercut barbershop on Friday.
Forty years doesn’t seem like 40 years,” Turner said. “Time seems to race by.” He owed his decades of speedy time to the nonstop flow of those in need of a little off the top. But, now, it was time for him to retire. So, at a little past three Friday afternoon, he cut his last customer’s hair and said thanks. His customer, Mark Hedden, had no idea when he entered the shop, that his haircut would be Turner’s last.
“I’m glad I got you,” Turner said smiling as Hedden was leaving. Hedden returned the smile and said thanks.
To mark the occasion of Turner’s final cut, members of the Farmington Downtown Business & Professional Association attended to watch the trimmed hair fly to the floor and joke with the master trimmer. Mike Mansir, president of the business association, presented Turner with a plaque thanking him for his 40 years and for his service to the downtown community over the years.
“We hope you have a long and happy retirement,” Mansir said. Turner plans to do just that with plenty of hunting and fishing and working on his beloved antique cars.
Best of all, the barbershop will remain a barbershop, Turner said. Heidi Boyce bought it and with Jackie Tardiff and two more employees will officially reopen the Broadway Barbershop on Tuesday. Boyce and Tardiff worked together at Dick’s Barbershop, located at the other end of Broadway.
Turner noted that the shop features the only spinning barber pole in Franklin County. The red,white and blue-striped symbol of barbers everywhere has been spinning there for 45 years. The shop’s first owner, Frank Howatt installed it. It’s remained there all those years, except for a period of a few months, when someone temporarily stole it 10 years ago.
It so happened that Howatt’s grandson, a plumber working on a job in West Farmington, recognized the unmistakable barber’s pole in the house and it was returned to its rightful perch above the doorway of Turner’s shop. “I didn’t press charges, I was just glad to get it back,” he said.
“It’s been a great profession. I loved working with kids,” Turner said. “I wish Heidi the best.” After handing the shop’s keys over, Boyce gave Turner a big hug.
“Thank you all,” Turner said.