Kenneth R. Murphy

Published 5:31 pm Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Kenneth R. Murphy
March 2, 1933 – Aug. 11, 2015

Captain Kenneth Ray Murphy, age 82, a resident of 212 Perquimans Dr., Chocowinity, died Tuesday, August 11, 2015 at his home.

Memorial services will be held at a later date.

Kenneth was born March 2, 1933 in Wilmington, NC to Marvin Brown and Louzetta Jane Fountain Murphy. He attended New Hanover High School and Wilmington College (now UNC-Wilmington), and graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 1955 with a BS degree in marketing. He joined the US Coast Guard in October 1955. He was commissioned an Ensign February 1956 and assigned to Captain of the Port duties in Juneau, Territory of Alaska, where he met and married the love of his life, Dorothy Caspar. She was teaching home economics at Ketchikan High School and was visiting Juneau Thanksgiving 1956, the date they met. Three days later, when she flew back to Ketchikan, they had set their wedding date, decided to have four children and had picked all four names. February 1959 in Charleston, SC, he was released to inactive duty and went to work for General Mills in Lynchburg, VA as the sales representative of the Grocery Products Division. Later he was transferred to Roanoke, VA. Realizing he wanted to make the Coast Guard a career, he requested and was ordered back to active duty in Portsmouth, VA where he was training officer for the Coast Guard Reserve. Following Portsmouth, he had various duty assignments in Portland, OR, Washington, DC, Miami, FL and San Francisco, CA. He rose through the ranks, being selected and promoted to Captain in July 1976. He retired August 1985 from Coast Guard Headquarters where he was Deputy Chief, Office of Reserve and program manager for the Reserve.

Kenneth is survived by his wife of 58 years and four children: Kenneth Murphy Jr. and wife Angela of Morehead City, NC, Kristine Bertholf and husband Kevin of Roanoke, VA, Karl Murphy and wife Jamie of Rockville, MD, and Keith Murphy and wife Jennie of Washington, DC and nine grandchildren.

Ken and his wife Dorothy loved to travel with their travel trailer, ocean and river cruises and coach tours. They have slept in all 50 states and visited 60 foreign countries. Often asked which place he liked the best, his standard answer was, “Where I am now.” Ken also loved his church, First Christian Church of Washington, and his neighborhood, Cypress Landing.

Ken knew he was dying as he had stage 4 cancer. He approached death knowing that he was in God’s hands and what is to be shall be. When you read this, take the time to have a Gordon’s Gin drink in his memory at cocktail hour tonight.

You may address condolences to the family by visiting

Paul Funeral Home & Crematory of Washington is honored to serve the Murphy family.