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Founding member of war museum dies

Not only did John R. “Jack” Murphy serve his country in Korea during the 1950s and march in President Eisenhower’s inauguration parade, but he was also a founding member of the Livingston County War Museum in Pontiac.

Murphy, who served as a lifetime member of the War Museum staff and the local VFW, passed away last Saturday at his Pontiac home. Murphy served as infantry in Korea in Iron Triangle, Heartbreak Ridge and the Punch Bowl, 1951-52. He then served with the 3rd Infantry “Old Guard,” the President’s Honor Guard.

Also, Murphy was a high school teacher and coach for over 40 years and led his teams to 600 victories as a varsity basketball coach. Over the years, Murphy was inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame, Pontiac Township High School sports Hall of Fame, Taylorville High School Hall of Fame and the Bloomington-Normal officials Hall of Fame.

Murphy received the Pontiac Citizen of the Year award in 2006 and was a member of the United Methodist Church of Pontiac. A celebration of life will be held at a later time, however memorials can be made to the Livingston County War Museum Jack Murphy Memorial Fund, 321 N. Main, Pontiac, IL 61764 of Pontiac United Methodist Church, 219 N. Chicago, Pontiac.

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