Brad Murphy, 85, of East Peoria, died on November 18 at Methodist Hospital following an illness of two years. He became increasingly debilitated over the summer due in part to another disappointing White Sox season, a team he rooted for his whole life.
He was born in Aurora, Illinois to Clayton and Emma Cline Mowery Murphy on September 20, 1931. He grew up in Cuba Illinois, where like so many little boys, he fell in love with sports. He continued competing in both football and baseball at Knox College and always appreciated the opportunities offered by Knox. He graduated in 1953 and was active for many years in the Knox 50 Year Club.
He began his coaching/teaching career at Astoria. He then coached for a year at Cuba before moving to East Peoria in 1955 where he met the love of his life, Judy. They married on June 7, 1958 at the First United Methodist church in Cuba. Judy survives. Also surviving are children, Patrick of Seattle and Katy and Brian James of Germantown Hills; brother, Milton and Linda Murphy and sister, Ellen and Clayton Waughtel, both of Cuba. He was intensely proud of his two grandchildren, Brad James of Davenport, IA and Carrie James in school at SIUC.
Brad earned his Master's degree at Western Illinois University and Specialists Degree in Guidance and Counseling at Western State University at Gunnison Colorado in 1966.
Brad worked for 10 years in the office of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, rising to the position of Director of Guidance and Counseling for the State of Illinois. To keep up with his first love, high school sports, he qualified as a football and basketball official. When an opportunity opened up at Lincoln, Illinois for a guidance counselor and coach he jumped at the chance. He finished his career at Lincoln, retiring in 1987.
Brad and his family enjoyed 32 summers at their island on Sandpoint Lake in northern Minnesota, a remote area on the Canadian border. Brad always enjoyed company and Judy often referred to the place as the Sandpoint Hilton. Their lease expired in 2004 and the island was absorbed in to Voyageur National Park. He often remarked that the feds might take the island but they could never rob the family of years of happy memories of summers at the lake.
At Brad's vehement insistence, there will be no funeral. A celebration of his life will be held at the Cuba United Methodist Church on Wednesday November 30 at 10 a.m. Please, no flowers. If you would like to remember Brad, Fon du Lac Library welcomes contributions. Reading was one of Brad's most cherished forms of entertainment, and he read the hard stuffa€"mainly history, mystery, and literary fiction. Deiters Funeral Home and Crematory in East Peoria are in charge of arrangements.
Brad led a fun-filled life, teaching, coaching, and traveling. Now all he would ask of his Lord is a decent team to coach (no shoo-ins) and fair officiating. We love you, Murf, and you will be achingly missed.
Celebration of Life
NOV 30. 10:00 AM
Cuba United Methodist Church
626 E Main St
Cuba, IL, US, 61427