CARTHAGE — D.C. Smoke Murphy, Escondido, California, died April 22, in the hospice facility of the VA Hospital in LaJolla, California.
Born on February 14, 1923, the family residence was in Montague, NY located on the Tug Hill Plateau. Severe winter weather required that his mother go to Lowville for his birth. The family home was destroyed by fire in 1929 and they moved to Lowville where he and his sister Jeanne attended Lowville Academy. They moved to Carthage in 1938 where he and Jeanne attended Augustinian Academy and they later transferred to Carthage High school. Both were in the class of 1941.
Smoke also attended Paul Smiths College, in the Adirondacks, and furthered his education in various colleges in California. He was a professional waiter; he owned and operated a Barbecue catering service for large groups. He raced boats for two years and finally settled into the carpentry trade. He retired at age 83 as a construction inspector. He lived for many years inDowney, California, moved to Temecula where he lived for more than 20 years, then moved to Escondido in 2012. Smoke spent the last week of his life in LaJolla VA Hospital Hospice care. Many of his close friends were with him during his final days.
He joined the US Army Air Corps in 1943 and served as a B - 17 Radio Operator with the 397th Bomb Squadron. He and his sister Jeanne were able to communicate in Morse Code. She was a radio operator with the Civil Aeronautic administration in Fairbanks, Alaska. Smoke bought his first Motorcycle in 1993 when he was 70 years old. He rode with the Run For the Wall the first time in 1995 and rode 12 more cross country runs and 4 partial runs. He joined the American Legion Riders Chapter 149, Escondido, California, in 2001 and was a rider with them until his last ride on March 11, 2012. He sold his 1993 Harley Davidson Heritage Classic with 240,000 plus miles, to one of his best friends in Lead Hill, Arkansas. This gentleman had taught Smoke to ride!
Smoke was a member of St. Marys Catholic Church, Escondido, California, Run for the Wall bikers, American Legion Post 149, Escondido, California. He was an active member of the Patriot Guard
Smokes family wishes to thank Tim and Riley Heck, Lauri Minville, Joe and Cathy Watt, Dan and Helen Lloyd who have supported and cared for Smoke in tremendous ways during his illness. They also thank all who have been supportive not only to him but to his family who are located so far away. Names are too numerous to mention but the amount of thanks to ALL is greater than words can express.
He is pre deceased by his parents, his brothers Bernard, Joseph USMC who died in Vietnam, his sister Jeanne who died March 7, 2013, Three nephews Timothy, Douglas and Joseph Wells and several Aunts, Uncles and Cousins. He is survived by his sister Norma Murphy Irvin, Ogdensburg, NY , nine nieces and nephews, 20 great nieces and nephews and six great - great nieces and nephews and several cousins.
Funeral Services will be Monday, May 6th, at 11 AM, at the St. James Catholic Church, Carthage, with the Rev. George F. Maroun, Pastor, officiating. Burial will follow in St. Marys Cemetery, in the family gravesite, in Copenhagen NY, with Military Honors. Calling hours will be held on Sunday from 4 -7 PM at the Lundy Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Inc., 500 State St., Carthage. The American Legion will have a service at 6 PM and Father Maroun will have a service at 6:45 PM. The Patriot Guard will be in attendance both Saturday and Sunday
In lieu of flowers contributions may be made in Smokes memory, to: Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 9 Erie Drive, Natick, Mass. 01760, http://www.lls.org/waystohelp/donate/donateonline/, to: Carthage Augustinian Academy,317 West Street, Carthage NY 13619, or to a charity of ones choice.