John Murphy

Article Image Alt Text

John Edward Murphy was born July 20, 1934, to William Joseph Murphy and Roxie (Garner) Murphy in Valentine, the Sandhills ranch land of the state. The youngest of three (Bill and Mary Rose) John spent his first two years in Omaha before Roxie returned with the children to Valentine and the Garner family ranch. William Joseph left the family to remain in Omaha.
Roxie married Charles Spain in 1937 and they had two sons, John’s brothers, Jerry and Sam, and in John’s words, life growing up was,”very busy and great.”
John enjoyed all school activities but excelled in science and music graduating Valentine High School in 1952. He enlisted in 1953 and served as a CPL in the 82nd Airborne Division. He was at home on leave attending a Valentine High basketball game with rival Ainsworth when he was reacquainted with a girl from the rival team, Rosemary Hershiser. They began a romance though John was stationed hundreds of miles away. Discharged in April 1955, the couple married July 20, 1955. They moved to Chadron (Chadron State College) where John began his pre-med studies, Rosemary worked, and they began a family. LuAnne, a daughter, was born in 1956, and a son William Lewis in 1958. John graduated in 1958 Magna Cum Laude with a BA in Chemistry. From Chadron the young family moved to Omaha where John earned his MD at the University of Nebraska, College of Medicine. In 1962 John E. Murphy became Dr. John E. Murphy, MD. The four Murphys moved to Lincoln. John did his internship at Bryan Memorial and a General Surgery residency at St. Elizabeth Hospital. Son John Patrick was born in 1962. The family then moved to Aurora, where Dr. Murphy built a new building and established a thriving practice with his partner Dr. Don Larson. Dr. Ken Treptow and Dr. John Wilcox would join the practice later. From 1964-1978 Dr. Murphy saw patients at the Aurora Medical Clinic and performed General/Orthopedic surgery at Aurora Memorial Hospital while also being Associate Professor at U of N, College of Medicine.
In 1978 John left the practice in Aurora and the Murphys took up residence outside Kansas City, MO. John began work as Director of Medical Services, John Knox Village, Lee’s Summit, Missouri. In 1981 grandson Jason was born. For the next 28 years while growing medical services at John Knox Dr. Murphy accepted other medical directorships, (Research Medical Center, Health Midwest, Pfizer Inc., Missouri Veterans Home) as well as being a physician and clinic director for two different practices, ( Research Physicians Clinic, Blue Ridge Clinic), being Associate Professor at UMKC, College of Medicine, and being appointed to the Governor’s Advisory Council on Aging (91-98) and the Missouri State Board of Directors, Nursing Home Administration (92-04).
The American Board of Family Practice awarded Dr. Murphy the degree of Fellow in 1981 and he was certified as a Diplomate twice.
He was almost eighty years old before retiring, and John Edward Murphy’s professional life was,“very busy”, but it was his time with friends and family that made life “great”. He always enjoyed time outdoors, finding time to hunt with friends and his sons, play a round of golf, or just “fix fence”. He coached his young sons in baseball and travelled to watch his daughter play softball. His love and talent as a musician was shared in church, both as a vocalist and a musical director. He and Rosemary had great times traveling with friends and nothing could get him more excited, or more exasperated than Cornhusker football.
He took pride in his Nebraska ranch land heritage, was certain of his abilities as a physician and surgeon, and he loved his friends, family, his wife Rosemary, and was grateful to God for it all. We loved him and he will be missed.
He is survived by his wife Rosemary; his children LuAnne (Dave) Hoch of Yuma, CO; William of Kansas City, MO; John of Pleasant Hill, MO; brothers Jerry Spain of Springfield, MO; Sam Spain of Valentine; grandson Jason Hoch of Denver and other relatives.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions a private family gathering will be held in Nebraska at a later date.
Memorials may be Donated in Honor to the USO (; providing services for the men and women of our military and their families since 1941.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet