John “Art” Arthur Murphy
John “Art” Arthur Murphy
April 14, 1945 – October 10, 2022
U.S. Air Force Veteran
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of John “Art” Arthur Murphy, of Richardson, Texas, at 11 pm on Monday October 10, 2022. While our hearts are hurting, we know that he is no longer in pain, and for that, we are thankful. John will be remembered by all as being a generous public servant for much of his life, and for his infectious smile and concern for others.
Though John spent much of his adult life in Texas, he was always proud of his Ohio roots. The son of George and Dorothy (McKinstry) Murphy, he was born on April 14, 1945, in Mount Vernon, Ohio, and lived there until he graduated from Mount Vernon High School. John was very much loved and survived by his wife, Eileen Lutan, his daughters Amber Baudendistel and Christine Childers, and eight grandchildren Nolan Wayne Moore, Aiden Wayne Moore, Timothy William Childers, Abigail Joice Childers, Eleanor Joan Childers, Henry Arthur Childers, Luciella Rose Baudendistel, and Theodore Arthur Baudendistel.
John was proud of his military service with the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War. He served from 1968 – 1972, and frequently recounted stories of life in uniform. Those who saw him often know that he loved to wear his Air Force hat, and he was always quick to make a detour to a military landmark when he was driving through an area.
John was equally proud of his time at Ohio University, where he was a member of Phi Gamma Delta, and graduated with a Master’s degree in Business Administration and a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature. His time with Phi Gamma Delta was impactful, and he continued to talk about his fraternity brothers often.
After his military service and time at Ohio University, John moved over to the business world, where his magnanimous personality helped him build teams and community. John worked in the oil and gas industry as a Rate Manager for Southern Union Company, retired from managerial positions including Vice President at Bank of America in 2001, and was President of Max Impressions, Inc., a printing and graphics communications company.
Perhaps John’s greatest legacy is that of a lifetime of public service. John served the City of Richardson for 29 years, simply because he loved his city and wanted to help it be the best it could possibly be. John’s impact across Richardson and North Texas was profound. He served 10 consecutive 2-year terms (1991-2011) in Place 3 of the Richardson City Council, where he worked to improve the city for all in Richardson. John’s commitment to Richardson and selfless service was recognized during this time, and he served 12 of these years as Mayor Pro Tem. John championed events such as the Wildflower Arts and Music Festival, The Eisemann Center for Performing Arts, four DART Rail Stations, and countless number of revitalization and improvement projects. John went above and beyond, working tirelessly to make Richardson a wonderful place to live, a dynamic place to do business, and home for outstanding cultural and recreational opportunities.
John also represented the City of Richardson in the Texas Municipal League Region 13 in 1998-2002, serving in the Board of Directors, and held the positions of Secretary, Regional Officer, and Vice President.
John represented the City of Richardson in the North Central Texas Council of Governments from July 1993 – May 2011, held various positions including serving in the Executive Board as President in 2008-2009.
John served in the Regional Transportation Council representing the cities of Richardson, Addison, Wylie, Sachse, Murphy in 1993-2011 and as Chairman in 2001-2003.
After his time on the city council, John continued to serve North Texas and the City of Richardson in the North Texas Municipal Water District in 2013-2022. He served on various committees, including the Legislative Committee for 6 years, where he served as Chairman for 2 years.
John’s lifetime of service was significant and impactful. Even outside of public spaces, he was always looking to serve others. To teach someone a new skill, advocate for people without a voice, or help someone with anything and everything. If you ever asked John if he would (fill in the blank), you almost certainly were treated to a big smile and his, “sure, I can do that.” He mentored anyone who asked and had a way of understanding what someone needed to succeed. And you could be assured, John would always give them more than they needed to succeed.
Though John will be remembered by many for his decades of selfless public service, his family and friends will remember the quiet, every day love that John showed them. He enjoyed reading and sharing history books, traveling with friends and family, and watching a good baseball or football game with his favorite people. John loved to try new places to eat, always on a quest to support small businesses. He especially loved anyone that could cook a good steak or bake an Italian Crème layer cake. But what he really loved the most was just time with his loved ones. He could get lost in conversation for hours on end, and anyone who has spent time with him knows that his quick wit and laughter would draw you in and captivate you. Even in his last days, he was making life better for those around him – breaking up their day with a joke or a laugh. He was immensely proud of his children and grandchildren and was always showcasing pictures and telling of their latest accomplishments. If John loved you, it was with all that he was – he would follow what was going on in your life, make ways to pave the path ahead, and would always make time to call and check on you – even when he was very busy. His friends and family were his greatest treasures, and he would go to the ends of the earth to make them happy.
John was a shining example of a person who cared for his country, his state, his local community, and his friends and family. He loved all these things and all these people without reserve. His generous nature, joyful laughter, and servant spirit will be missed tremendously.
John was a member of First United Methodist Church in Richardson, Texas, where a Memorial for him will be held on November 10, 2022, at 2 pm, with Pastor Clayton Oliphint officiating. His memorial service is open to the community. The address for the church is 503 N. Central Expressway, Richardson, TX 75080. At a later date, John will be buried at Mound View Cemetery in his hometown of Mount Vernon, Ohio.
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