“Indivisible,” a movie about Canton native Darren Turner's Army service and the effects on his marriage, had a run in theaters nationwide this fall. While no longer playing on the big screen, the movie has launched a ministry led by Turner and his wife Heather (www.darrenandheatherturner.com).
Although the film will be released on DVD at some point, that information wasn’t available at press time. Keep checking the Turners’ website for updates. In the meantime, Darren answered our questions about his life, and being in the national spotlight.
What is your Cherokee County connection? When did you join the Army?
“I grew up in Canton, and went to Cherokee High School. I also graduated from the University of Georgia and continued to live in Athens for several years. I met my wife in Athens, and we got married and started a family there. After a few years in campus ministry at UGA, I decided to become an Army chaplain. I joined the Army in 2007, and deployed a few months after my first day of active duty. It was fast.
“‘Indivisible’ is focused on 2007-2008 during that deployment, and several months after returning home from that deployment. That was a long 15-month deployment to Iraq. I have since then deployed multiple times for shorter durations to many different parts of the world. I absolutely love serving soldiers and their families. They have signed up to give their lives, if necessary, for you and me, and it’s an incredible privilege to be in their ranks.”
How did the movie come about? How does it feel to see your life portrayed by actors on the big screen?
“The movie producer first contacted us in 2011, after he had read some online articles about the deployment, and he also found a blog I kept during the deployment, where I exchanged notes and pictures with Heather and the kids. He already had an idea in mind to create a faith-based film about a military chaplain, so, when he read our story, and heard further about our marital crisis and recovery after deployment, he was convinced this would make a good movie script. We hesitated initially, thinking our story wasn’t unique, or very interesting, but he had a passion to tell this story of crisis and redemption. Once the military gave him the green light to make ‘Indivisible,’ we agreed to give him permission to use our names and tell this story. It’s still surreal to see characters playing us, hearing our names and our kids’ names spoken by these characters, and reliving some of the scenes portrayed in the film. We hope people will ultimately see God’s grace on display as he turns our hard hearts back toward him and each other during the story. We also hope people will have a new appreciation for what military and first responder families go through. They have unique challenges in their lives as they run to chaos and the sound of guns.”
Where was the movie filmed? How can our readers see it?
“The production company is based in Memphis, Tennessee, so much of the movie was filmed there. Some of the combat scenes were filmed in a desert area of California. I don’t know yet how long ‘Indivisible’ will be in theaters; hopefully, it will be seen enough to justify a long run. I assume that after it finishes in the theaters, it will be available for purchase in several ways, including online and DVD. PureFlix is the distributor; they have the master plan for current and future use of ‘Indivisible.’
What are your post-movie plans? Has the movie, and the response to it, made a difference in your life?
“It’s a privilege to be part of ‘Indivisible’ and to share our story of hope with others. As far as future plans go, I’m still an active duty chaplain, serving soldiers and their families, and I will continue to do that as long as I can. The film may bring us speaking opportunities for various groups, like military groups, churches, conferences, etc. If that happens, we will respond accordingly, and hopefully be able to encourage people at some of those events, as long as we can take time off to do that. We have a busy family now, with two teenagers and a pre-teen, so life is certainly filled with activity. If people want to invite either Heather or me, or both, to speak at an event, they can send us a request at www.darrenandheatherturner.com.