A tribute to Daniel Turnbull


It is with deep sadness that Back Up learnt of the death of Daniel Turnbull last week.

Danny was an exuberant and fearless service user, first going skiing with Back Up in 1995.  It soon became clear he had the skills and ability to show others how fulfilling life could be with a spinal cord injury (SCI), and he quickly became heavily involved in our under 18s services supporting other young people to challenge themselves and build their confidence following an SCI.

Danny was passionate about Back Up’s work, and determined that our services should be available to everyone affected by spinal cord injury.  Danny joined the Back Up Board in 2001 and became Chair of Trustees in 2010, stepping down from the Board after 10 years in 2011. The role suited Danny’s combination of skills: highly ambitious, hard working with a great eye for detail (honed no doubt in his legal roles at Stewarts Law) combined with compassion and a wonderfully cheeky sense of humour. 

                                        Danny at the Back Up Ball

Danny is greatly missed by us all.  A special tribute will be made at the Back Up Ball 2017, his favourite Back Up event. 

Dr Clair Pollard, friend and fellow trustee says:

"I first met Danny in 1999 when I was an in-patient at Stoke Mandeville recovering from my spinal cord injury. I find it almost impossible to briefly sum up the incredibly positive effect of meeting him at that time in my life. His energy, sense of humour, compassion, love of life and utter conviction that anything was possible for himself, for me and for anyone else with a spinal cord injury were phenomenal. He helped me to believe in and feel good about myself again.  He later became a very good friend and I saw first-hand just how many other people had the same experience of him as I did. The SCI community owes a huge debt of thanks to this amazing man and he will sorely missed by all who loved him"

Becky Hill, Back Up’s Chair says:

“Danny was just simply the epitome of Back Up. He never tired from supporting others and making a positive difference to the SCI community at large. He was a valuable and highly regarded Chair and member of the Board, but above all he was a dear friend to so many of us. He is sorely missed but his legacy lives on in his family and in those he met throughout his all-too-short lifetime. Our thoughts and hearts are with Susie, Lucas and Freddie and his wider family at this time.”