Wee Asked Shawn Turak

WEEasked some simple questions — and your neighbors, friends, co-workers, acquaintances, maybe some strangers, answered. Get to know them a little bit better with our fun series, “WEEasked.” Look for it a couple of times a month, most likely on Mondays. Do you have someone you’d like to see featured? Send us an email to weelunk@weelunk.com, and please be sure to put WEEasked in the subject line.

Baseball and laundry.

Robbery, sexual abuse and murder.

That’s what this happily married, full-time working mom concentrates on. The mom of two boys deals with sports. The assistant prosecuting attorney for Ohio County handles major felony crimes, such as murder, robbery, sexual assault and child sexual abuse.

“Like so many working moms out there, I juggle many things: work, laundry, kids sports and activities, and life in general with teenagers!

“As busy as life is, I find I am the last to go to bed, trying to carve out a little ‘me’ time where I can,” she admits. “My husband is also an attorney with a very busy practice (shout out to GKT!). He understands and shares the challenges of balancing work and family. He is an excellent partner who I don’t credit enough.”

While Shawn’s biggest passion is her family, she also is a music enthusiast and loves to watch sports, especially the Steelers and the Pirates. A love for baseball was not automatic, she said, and calls it “an acquired taste, mostly spoon-fed to me by my children.”

She also is an accomplished downhill skier. (She tells her sons she “can still kick their ass on the mountain.”)

Her faith in God is very important, and she attends Mass regularly with her family at The Cathedral. “I love our parish!” She also says she’s “blessed with many good and diverse friends from every corner of the tapestry of my life.”

The Turak family: Thomas, 12, Chris, Matthew, 13, and Shawn

Here is what Shawn answered when WEEasked:

Tell us something that would surprise Weelunk readers about you.

Subscribe to Weelunk

Probably, nothing! I am a firm believer in transparency. I am an open book and for the most part, what you see is what you get.  This makes me a terrible poker player, by the way! However, I would add (maybe to my own surprise) that I took up running this year because it is something that always seemed impossible to me. Little by little, I am making progress. My goal, having had a BIG milestone birthday this summer, is to “run” the Ogden in May 2019. I am up to six miles on Saturday morning. Trust me, they are slow miles, but like many things in life, with commitment and attitude, the impossible can be made possible. On my bulletin board, I have a sign that reads, “Dead Last” is greater than “Did Not Finish” which trumps “Did Not Start.” This kinda sums me up: not a quitter. Never was, never will be.

Shawn, hard at work at the Ohio County Prosecutor’s Office.

What is the best part of your job?

The best part of my job is helping people. One thing about my job is I encounter all kinds of people, as victims come in all shapes, sizes, race, gender and economic status. Unfortunately, I encounter daily, in just about every case, people at their worst, both the victims and the accused. If I am able to help the victims, then that’s the best part of my job. It might surprise some, but those who really know me, know that my job — to me — is not all about obtaining a conviction. It’s important. Doing the right thing, however, is paramount. I have never lost sight of that.

What’s your favorite Wheeling neighborhood and why?

Woodsdale is my favorite neighborhood! It’s the one we call home, where my kids played baseball from T-Ball to Pony, and the place with the best Halloween neighborhoods and decorating!

What book is on your nightstand or e-reader right now?

This summer, I finished “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls. My sister-in-law Laura Reed grabbed me one night this winter and we heard Ms. Walls lecture at West Liberty University. Walls’ story fascinated me!

What’s your favorite night out on the town?

My ideal night on the town would encompass a division of the evening into two parts, beginning with a movie with my teenage sons who have imparted to me the appreciation for humor the likes of Adam Sandler, followed by a quiet meal out with my husband Chris Turak, sharing a glass (at least) of wine.

What is your wish for Wheeling?

My wish for Wheeling is an end to the opioid crisis, which is destroying more than just our town, but the state and country.