Gayl Berkenkamp Foshee
Fort Collins - Gayl Berkenkamp Foshee passed away quickly and peacefully at the age of 85 years on November 10, 2020, with her daughter, Hilary Allen, by her side.
Gayl was born in Mesa, Ariz., on August 11, 1935, to Dorothy and William "Bill" Berkenkamp. She and her three siblings, Bill, Jean, and Steve, were raised on their family ranch, where she developed a love for animals from a young age. Gayl graduated from Arizona State University and went on to earn a Master's in Painting from University of California, Berkeley, and an MBA from National University in San Diego. She also studied painting and ceramics at San Miguel de Allende in Mexico. Gayl spent most of her adult life in San Diego, Calif., where she worked as a teacher and then as Facilities Manager for National University. After retirement, Gayl and her husband/love-of-her-life, Kevin Murphy, enjoyed their beautiful mountain home in Estes Park, Colo., where she relished frequent wildlife sightings, played bridge with friends, and participated in multiple book clubs. Gayl and Kevin loved traveling, including taking a memorable family vacation to Italy, and visiting their favorite places—Tahiti, and Garland's Lodge in Oak Creek Canyon. A gifted artist, Gayl took inspiration from landscapes and animals to create bold abstract paintings and sensitive pencil drawings (especially birds). She was an avid reader with a rich sense of humor, a warm laugh, and a witty turn-of-phrase. Gayl loved to entertain and discuss current events, literature, and art over a glass of red wine and one of her gourmet home-cooked meals. She enjoyed gardening throughout life, including tending to her colorful rose garden in San Diego and her native plant landscape in Estes Park. Animals were one of her greatest passions. She gave generously to animal welfare organizations for wildlife, companion animals, and farm animals. Never without pets, she rescued and shared her life with numerous cats and dogs who were her fur-children, and she leaves behind her beloved dog, Abby, and cats Zachary, Nora, and Isabelle. Most of all, Gayl was a devoted, loving mother and tremendously positive role model for her daughters, Alison and Hilary. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Kevin Murphy, and brother, William "Bill" Berkenkamp. Gayl will be forever missed by her daughters, Hilary Gwynne Allen and Margret Alison Foshee; her sister, Jean Dearborn, and brother, Steve (Carol) Berkenkamp; 4 nieces; nephew; and innumerable friends. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Project Wildlife in San Diego, where she volunteered many years as a foster mom for orphaned raccoons, a baby bird feeder, and an opossum rescuer. Project Wildlife, a Program of San Diego Humane Society https://www.sdhumane.org/programs/project-wildlife/
5500 Gaines St., San Diego, Calif., 92110
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