Gail Purdy Brophy
1942 - 2020
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SARATOGA SPRINGS – Gail Purdy Brophy, 77, loving mother and grandmother, devoted wife, outstanding athlete, persistent successful business woman, inspiring person and great friend to all, passed away peacefully at Saratoga Hospital on Sunday, February 23, 2020, after eight years living and thriving with pulmonary fibrosis.Born on July 31, 1942 in Glens Falls, NY, she was the daughter of the late George and Elizabeth Purdy, and sister to the late Anne Bliss. She was married to James “Bud” Brophy for 28 years, until he passed away at age 79 in 1998. She is survived by her two daughters, Mary Brophy Magnus and Kristen (Brandan) Greczkowski. Five grandchildren, Sydney and Zayda Greczkowski, Evan, Kayla and Emily Magnus. Three nieces, Linda (Adrian) Stone, Laura (Dave) Borst, and Debra Apple. As well as a plethora of people that mom considered her “family.”Gail was the owner of Purdy’s Discount Wine and Liquor – a Saratoga Springs’ fixture. Her father, George Purdy, opened the business in 1960 and in 1963, he became ill. Gail left college and put her sports on hold, as she took the reins of the business. She ran the family business until she was hospitalized two weeks ago.She was known as an area golf legend. She played in the U.S. Women’s Open in 1960 and 1961, making the cut both times. Back then, only 40 players made the cut for the final 36 holes. She was the New York State Women’s Amateur champion in 1961, the youngest at the time to ever win that championship. She won the state women’s amateur again in 1963. She left the competitive scene of golf at this time to run the family business and raise her two children. In 2006, she roared back on the golf scene. She won the New York State Super Senior State Championship in 2007 and 2008 and was runner up in 2009, 2012, and 2013. Gail was a member of the Glens Falls Country Club when she was young. She has been a longtime member of Saratoga National Golf Club, and Ballston Spa Country Club since 2015. She enjoyed the game of golf and contributed technical advice to all that were lucky enough to play with her. She loved speedskating. She won more than 100 titles in the northeast when she was young, including winning several Eastern States Championships, New England Championships, Eastern Seaboard Championships, New York State Championships, and the Lake George International Silver Skates. She won seven National or North American divisional championships. At age 16, she competed in the first U.S. Olympic Trials for speed skating women in 1959, missing the Olympic team by one spot. Less than twenty-five women from ten nations competed in speedskating at these Olympic Games in Squaw Valley. She competed in the U.S. Olympic Trials for the 1964 Olympic Games, just missing the team once again. One of her greatest moments was winning the 1965 North American Indoor Short Track Championships. She was running the family business, taking care of her father, with limited time devoted to skating, and she beat Olympian Janice Smith, and another future Olympian. During the same season, she was crowned champion at the Diamond Trophy Indoor in Lake Placid over Olympic medalist Jeanne Ashworth. Gail was truly fierce, fast and fearless.Gail enjoyed being with her family and friends, in countless gatherings at her home in Saratoga Springs. She had a heart of gold and without question, she would help people. She was a great supporter to women’s and junior golf. She has been a member of Saratoga Winter Club speedskating since she was a teenager. She is honored at the Weibel Ave Ice Rink as a contributor to the sport of speed skating and has been a fixture at the ice rink for a long time, known to many as Momma Broph or Gramma Gail.Memorial donations may be made to help support the Saratoga Winter Club. Checks payable to Saratoga Winter Club or SWC, with “Gail Memorial” in memo line. Mail to: SWC, 69 King Rd. Saratoga Springs, NY 12866. Or go to for more info.Relatives and friends are invited to call from 4-7pm on Sunday, March 1, 2020 at William J. Burke & Sons Funeral Home, 628 North Broadway, Saratoga Springs (518) 584-5373.A funeral service will be celebrated the following day, Monday, March 2, 2020 at 11am at the funeral home and burial will follow at St. Peter’s Cemetery, West Avenue.Online remembrances may be made at

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Published in The Saratogian from Feb. 26 to Feb. 27, 2020.
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10 entries
March 2, 2020
I'm so sorry to hear of your Mom's passing, she was a great person, and Loved by all. As a young Child I always looked up to her for guidance & strength,and always was right on with good advise, she will be missed.
Johnny Wurster
March 1, 2020
A true class act with an amazing work ethic......always had time to say hello......we always had something to chat about.......she'll be sorely missed ! God Bless, Gail !!!
Eileen Coppola
February 29, 2020
Pieter Dykstra
February 29, 2020
Gail and I were college roommates, almost 60 years ago.
We remained friends over the years. We might not talk for awhile, always a call on our birthdays, and we were able to pick up a conversation like we had talked an hour before.
Will miss you, roomie.
Marilyn Mahon Dalton
February 28, 2020
Gail was an icon in the wine industry. I had many interactions with her on the sales side. I have always had great respect for how she ran her business and treated her employees.
The wine industry will miss her!
William A Biata
February 28, 2020
Cherished Friend Bouquet- VASE INCLUDED
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William A Biata Jr.
February 28, 2020
The Spathiphyllum Plant
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John Sasen
February 28, 2020
Gail was truly a sweet sweet lady husband and I are grateful to have had the chance to get to know her ... always the kind person with the big smile..she will be missed...

Our sincere condolences......

Brenda and Mark Cintula
February 27, 2020
Karen and I loved seeing Gail. She was always so friendly and always had time to share a story or two. To know her was to truly respect her. A true Hall of Famer of Life.
Rich Johns
February 27, 2020
What a great lady.She will be missed by many.RIP
Yvonne Sullivan
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