James "Jim" L. Murphy
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Jim passed away suddenly at his home on Saturday, February 9, 2013. His death was painless and his wife, Kellie, was with him. He was born May 24, 1952, in Bakersfield. He was the only child of William Murphy and Shirley Shepard Murphy. Both have preceded him in death.
Jim spent most of his growing years in Upstate New York with his dad and many aunts, uncles and cousins. He graduated from Elma High School, Elma, NY in 1970. After high school, Jim attended college at Morehead State University in Kentucky, majoring in philosophy and pre-med. In 1972, Jim was called into military service by the U.S. Army. He served his country as a Medical Specialist in Korea attending the wounded during the end of the Vietnam conflict.
After his military service, Jim moved to California; first to San Francisco and then Las Gatos where he began his lifelong career with computer systems. He eventually worked his way to Salinas and joined the IT department for the County of Monterey where he remained for 25 years. He retired last October and felt extremely lucky to have been afforded the opportunity working for the people of Monterey County. In conversation he would refer to his colleagues as "the members of my IT family".
Jim met the love of his life, Kellie Bellone, soon after he moved to Salinas. His life with Kellie, their four dogs and two cats, was the best part of his life. His love of family and animals was an instant attraction to Kellie. Their wedding party included their two dogs as ring bearers, and both dogs accompanied them on their honeymoon.
Spending quality time with Kellie and their family was his priority in life. He enjoyed working on their home and his '56 Ford Pickup Truck. He was also an automotive racing enthusiast, and loved attending NHRA drag races, sprint car and other races with his friends. He recently volunteered at Mazada Laguna Seca Raceway.
Always a kind heart and soul and helpful to many, he took great pleasure in helping others, family, friends or strangers. Towards the end of his life, Jim struggled with pulmonary conditions limiting his mobility. But it never stopped him from being that friendly face in the store, the warm heart that had a hug for everyone and always the desire to help anyone. Everyone was met with a smile and a hug that generated from his heart.
Jim is survived by his wife, Kellie and their loyal pets, Bentley, Patrick, Molly and Cody; as well as cats, Betty and Purrzilla; as well as many cousins of the Murphy family, Sharon and Bill Streb of Deltona, FL, Richard and Judy Allison of Pensacola, FL, and Kim and Deborah Endicott of Syracuse, IN.
Jim will be missed by family and friends alike as evidenced by the number of people coming together to support Kellie and family through this most difficult time.
A Rosary and celebration of Jim's life will be held Thursday, February 14, 2013 at 6:00 p.m., at the Brother Edmund Rice Chapel, 919 Iverson St., Salinas, CA 93901.
A second celebration will follow Friday afternoon at the Murphy home.
The family wishes to express their thanks to Jim's doctors, Dr. Karim Tadlaoui and Dr. Thomas Mustoe. While Jim didn't particularly like going to the doctor, he always enjoyed chatting with them.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Jim's favorite charity (NORCAL) Northern California Golden Retriever Rescue. www.golden-rescue.org.
Funeral arrangements by Struve and Laporte Funeral Home. Online condolences to www.struveandlaporte.com
Struve and Laporte Funeral Chapel
41 West San Luis Salinas, CA 93901
Published in The Salinas Californian on Feb. 13, 2013