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Helen Elizabeth Murphy
(July 24, 1917 - June 17, 2013)

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Helen Elizabeth Murphy

Helen Elizabeth MURPHY Born July 24, 1917, in Glasgow, Montana to John and Mary Cora Domek; died June 17, 2013.

Helen E. Murphy drew her last breath on June 17 after an incredibly full life. Her beloved husband, John, survives her.

Helen was born in Glasgow as one of three children; her older brother John Domek and younger brother Harry Domek preceded her in death. Helen moved to the Seattle area as a small child and spent most of her life there. Her early years were spent in the Georgetown and Bitter Lake neighborhoods.

Helen graduated from Cleveland High School and then obtained a B.S. in Nursing from the University of Washington in 1941. Helen later returned to the UW in 1969 at the age of 52, with 11 children at home, to earn her Public Health certificate. This additional schooling gave her the necessary credentials to serve as school nurse, allowing her to work during school hours and spend more time with her family—her primary focus and passion.

Helen was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, aunt, friend, nurse, amateur photographer, seamstress, painter and avid reader. Helen was a bread baker and taught her children the art of bread making. She cooked nutritious food and always had room at the table for another mouth to feed—a frequent occurrence at the Murphy table. She was a golfer and skier prior to her motherhood years, and the Murphy family frequently camped, hiked and traveled to the east coast by car, camping along the way more than once (to visit the Murphy family in Massachusetts). She loved to play backgammon, cribbage and pinochle. At one point she and John were players at the Green Lake Lawn Bowling Club.

Her nursing career began at the Boeing Company, and then when World War II broke out she joined the US Navy, where she served as an Ensign. After her marriage to John at the Naval Base in Santa Ana, California, she was employed in many other positions, including nursery nursing at Northwest Hospital and school nursing in the Seattle School District.

After marrying John in Santa Ana, she convinced him to settle in Seattle. The Murphy family eventually lived in the vicinity of Carkeek Park in Seattle, where all 11 children attended Christ the King School.

She and her husband John relocated to Tumwater from 1975 to 1989 after Helen retired from nursing. Helen, always looking for a challenge, served in the Tumwater City Council in the mid 80s.

Beyond her commitments to nursing, Helen’s most important career was as the loving mother of eleven children. She and the love of her life, John, spent most of their retirement years traveling to spend time with their many children, grandchildren (29) and great-grandchildren (27). Helen enjoyed photographing her family and her many journeys.

Helen was active in the Catholic Church. She and John were involved and active members of Christ the King (Seattle), Saint Michaels while in Tumwater, and Eucharistic Ministers for St Mark Catholic Church in Shoreline after returning to Seattle. They regularly delivered Holy Communion to residents at Anderson House, a Shoreline nursing home.

Helen is loved and survived by a large adoring family: John, her devoted husband of nearly 69 years; her children, Patricia Peyton (John deceased), Michael Murphy (Teri), Kathleen Murphy, Maureen Condit (Jerry), Ileana Murphy Haggerty (Michael), Joan Weis (Robert), Brian Murphy (Kathryn), Sharon Curtis (David), Diane Payne, Claire Chacharon and James Paul Murphy (Carole); 29 grandchildren and 27 great-grandchildren.

Recitation of the Rosary will be Thursday, June 27, at 7 PM at Hoffner Fisher & Harvey Chapel 508 N. 36th St., Seattle, 98103 Funeral Mass will be celebrated Friday, June 28, at 11 AM at St. Mark Catholic Church (18033 15th Place NE, Shoreline, 98155. Interment, Holyrood Catholic Cemetery. Remembrances may be made to a charity of your choice in Helen's name.

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