Michael Reece Murphy of Idabel, Oklahoma passed this life on Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at his home. He was born October 16, 1932, to Hurchel and Essie Guest Murphy at Millerton, Oklahoma.
Mike left home at an early age and went to Chelan, Washington where he worked in an apple orchard. He moved on to Oregon and worked in a pea cannery. He then moved to Big Springs, Texas and worked as a dish washer before he moved up to a fry cook. He moved on to Orange, Texas and worked in the oil fields. He did most of his traveling by hitch hiking. He came back to Millerton, Oklahoma for a short time. He then moved to Oklahoma City where he went to work at Tinker Air Force base. In February 1953, he joined the Air Force. He was stationed for 8 years at Barksdale in Shreveport, Louisiana. While he was in the Air Force, he became a pilot. He had his own plane for several years and was known to land it in places that he wasn’t supposed to. In those 8 years he saw a lot of countries. He had a short stay in Morocco, Africa. He got out of the Air Force in 1961 and moved back to Millerton, Oklahoma. He purchased the Royal McCurtain Café from Ray Downs and moved to Idabel. He operated the café for many years. He was elected Idabel Councilman and later was appointed Mayor of Idabel. He purchased buildings from Pat Martin where he owned and operated a grocery store. Later he had a furniture store. Mike was elected to the House of Rep. in 1969 where he served for 22 years. He was very instrumental in getting a lot of things done for McCurtain County, including improvement of Beavers Bend, Cedar Creek golf course, Kiamichi Vo-Tech, the higher learning center and nutrition centers. He joined partners with Briley and Beaver Company. They developed land around Beavers Bend, Broken Bow Lake and the Buffalo Community. Mike worked for Congressman Bill Brewster doing community meetings getting back to Bill what the people would like to see changed. After retiring in 1991, he ran his ranch, hunted and fished.
Mike was a member of the Bypass Church of Christ. He was a member of Idabel Masonic Lodge #264. He was a member of VFW and helped get it started in Idabel. The first meeting they had was at the Royal McCurtain Café. He loved riding horses. Mike was an avid hunter and fisherman. He had many mounts in his home to prove his hunting skills. It was like walking into a museum. Mike loved his children, grandchildren and family very much, spending time together and having big family meals. Mike never met a stranger. When you would greet him, “Mike, how are you? “. He had a saying, “I am just fine, but I will probably get over it.”
He was preceded in death by: his parents; wife, Pat Murphy brothers, Charles and Jan Murphy; a sister, Bernice Woodall; and a very special friend, Jody Taylor.
Mike is survived by his wife, Sue Murphy of the home: a son and daughter-in-law, Michael and Faith Murphy of Idabel; two daughters and a son-in-law, Tanya and Frank Drobil of Clarksville, TX and Dayla Cox of Idabel; brother and sister-in-law, Joe and Fredda Murphy of Powderly, TX; brother-in-law, Daley Woodall of Idabel, OK; grandchildren, Lacy Jones, Rian Jones, Cameron Drobil, Jeremy Drobil, Joshua Drobil, Shanda Murphy, Michael Jay Murphy and Cody and Lisa Cox; great-grandchildren, Landry Barrick, Quentin Cox, Breanna Cox and Kiley Cox; he also leaves to cherish his memory a blended family, Ray and Michelle Rogers of Baton Rouge, LA., Susan Leonard of Kingston, MO, Jake Leonard, Michael and Jennifer Webb, Jasmine Leonard, Joclynn Young, Brailynn Young, Autumn Webb, and Lane Webb, Miranda Rogers, Zakary Allison, Idanesie Geireman, Ariel Wise and Daniel Wise; a host of other family and many, many friends. Mike will forever be in our hearts.
Services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 9, 2013 at the Bypass Church of Christ in Idabel, OK with Aubrey Thompson Jerry Falling and Herb Matlock officiating. Interment will follow at the Wheelock Cemetery in Millerton, OK with military honors.
The family will receive friends from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday, November 8, 2013 at the funeral home.