Remembering Steve Murphy, 1945-2016
Steve Murphy, a man of legendary generosity, a fixture at Mammoth Lakes Jazz and the longtime property manager at Mammoth West, died on Friday, December 2 at his home in Bishop after a bout with cancer. He was 71.
Murphy was an Eastern Sierra resident for more than four decades.
Murphy was born in Los Angeles on June 15, 1945. He grew up in Arcadia and spent his summers in Avalon, where his mother was a seamstress and made all the tablecloths for the local restaurants.
He quit high school during his senior year when his father suffered a heart attack, forcing Steve to go to work to support the family. He later earned his GED.
He spent four years in the Navy from 1965-1969 and served in Vietnam.
He met his future wife Nancy during a trip home one weekend when he was stationed in Oakland.
As Nancy described it, “He sat at the bar and stared at me for an hour. I was there with my friends and I told them I thought he was a weirdo. But then he finally asked me to dance, and we talked until the bar closed and then we talked some more at Denny’s until five in the morning.”
Nancy says he really dated her and her mother Lois, as Nancy’s father had recently passed away leaving Lois widowed, so the trio went everywhere together.
The couple was married a month after Murphy got out of the service and remained married for the last 47 years of Steve’s life.
As Nancy said, “He was the love of my life … and he was fun!”