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Kathryn Murphy

Visitation with the family will take place on Saturday, January 15, from 1:30-2:00 PM at Porter Funeral Home of Rock Valley, Iowa. A short memorial service will begin at 2:00 PM. Burial will follow at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery of Rock Valley.

Kathryn Elizabeth Murphy, 81, of Ventura, California passed on December 23, 2021. She was our beloved wife, mother, grandmother, aunt and friend to many. Kathy was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, the third child of Albert and Betty Engel. Kathy met Dan in the third grade when they were classmates at St. Mark’s School. They married in 1963. Fifty-eight years of marriage is surprising to many, but Kathy & Dan made it beautiful. Maureen and Laura were born in Minnesota, ending Kathy’s career as a first-grade teacher, but with no regrets. The family moved to Laredo, Texas, during Dan’s Air Force service, where Sharon was born. Next stop was Kansas City, KS, where she happily and capably met the needs of her young family, while Dan was busy completing his neurosurgery residency. Tom was born after the move to Ventura, California. Trips back to visit the Minnesota family were happy occasions. Kathy dedicated time to teach religion class at Sacred Heart Church for 25 years. She was selfless and thoughtful, known for baking banana bread for others. She had a close group of friends, playing Bunco for at least 40 years. People often referred to her in superlatives: nicest, kindest, humblest, bravest—a real angel among us. Kathy enjoyed traveling the world with Dan and friends, visiting Ireland, Singapore, New Zealand, the Holy Land, and Denmark, just to name a few.

Kathy is remembered with love by her husband, Dr. Dan Murphy; her children, Maureen DeVaughn (Dennis), Laura Jespersen (Todd), Sharon Murphy, Karen Glasgow, Tom Murphy (Pam); her four grandchildren (Andrew, Peter, Esan & Savitha); her brother, Tom Engel (Mary Lou); sister, Margaret Mary Bannigan; and many nieces, nephews, and their families.


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