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L. Duane Murphy, 99, died on November 26, 2015 in Williamsburg, where he had been living since 2001.
Born on May 16, 1916 to Lester and Faye Murphy, Duane lived most of his life in Sublette, KS. He had one sister, Margaret Ellen, who died at the age of 16.
Growing up in Sublette, he was a star athlete and valedictorian of his high school class. He graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in agriculture, which prepared him for his first job as Sheridan County Supervisor for the Farm Security Administration, in Hoxie, KS.
He fell in love and married Pauline Huxman in 1940, and soon thereafter, returned to Sublette to start a farming career that lasted well over 50 years. Duane and Pauline raised two daughters, Kathleen (who preceded him in 2009) and MaryAnne. He and Pauline were married 63 years until her passing in 2003.
Duane participated in a number of community organizations and projects. He served on the Sublette City Council, was President of the Haskell County Fair Board and was a member of the Sublette Methodist Church.
One of his favorite projects was helping grow the Haskell County Historical Society and Museum. Duane raised funds to move the Railroad Depot building from its original location by the tracks, to its new home at the Sublette Fairgrounds.
Among Duane’s special interests were objects of Western Art. Perhaps that was because he was a true “cowboy.” He rode horses, branded and tended herds of cattle … and always wore his cowboy boots, a Stetson cowboy hat, and a belt with a huge cowboy style buckle.
Duane is survived by his daughter, MaryAnne Bruno and her husband, Don; grandson, Alan Pedersen-Giles and his wife, Jennifer; granddaughter, Anne Giles and her husband, Scott; grandson, Geoffrey Giles and his wife, Reneé; four great-grandchildren, Jens and Westen Pedersen-Giles, Aria and Simon Giles; and his son-in-law, Gary Giles.
Memorial contributions in Duane’s name may be made to the Haskell County Historical Museum, PO Box 101, Sublette, KS, 67877, or to the Duane and Pauline Murphy Scholarship, Kansas State University, 2323 Anderson Ave #500, Manhattan, KS, 66502.
A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Deceember 2 at Nelsen Funeral Home in Williamsburg, VA.
Please leave online condolences for the family at Nelsen Funeral Home.
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