By GREG JORDAN
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
PRINCETON, W.Va.v — Black and white photographs in late 1970s high school yearbooks paint the image of a Mercer County teenager who participated in chess, science and the Bible, but today he’s a 57-year-old California resident facing charges of child endangerment.
David Turpin’s parents, James and Betty Turpin, still reside in the Princeton area. They had no knowledge of the events in California, and were working to contact their grandchildren. Neither of them, now in their 80s, had visited California for six years, but the grandchildren were well at that time. The family did send photographs taken during vacations to places like Las Vegas, and the children appeared to be all right, James Turpin said Tuesday.
People in the Princeton area recalled the Turpin family, but most only knew about David and Louise Turpin, and didn’t know them personally. Mike Gilbert, 56, of Glenwood recalled attending school with David Turpin and graduating with him in 1979 from Princeton High School. He described David Turpin as an intelligent student who earned good grades.
“Yea, I haven’t see the boy since 1979,” Gilbert recalled Wednesday. “For lack of a better word, he was kind of nerdy. He was always kind of a quiet guy and very intelligent. He always did real well in school, had real good grades. We went to Glenwood Junior High together and on from there to Princeton High School. He dressed nice and he wore bow ties on occasion.”
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