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Herbert Murphy; Olympic Swim Team Hopeful

August 23, 2000

Herbert Myron Murphy, a retired steamfitter, died Thursday at Glenwood Convalescent Hospital after suffering a stroke on Aug. 6. He was 86.

Murphy was born in Waterloo, Iowa, on Dec. 5, 1913, and grew up with two brothers.

In 1932 he tried out for the U.S. Olympic swim team but was beaten out by a now-famous swimmer, Clarence "Buster" Crabbe.

He married Evelyn Dawn McColloch on July 4, 1936.

The couple moved to California during World War II, and he served with the Navy Seabees. They lived in Long Beach and Fontana while he worked as a steamfitter but lived in Oxnard for the past 29 years. He retired in 1976.

Murphy was a member of Masonic Lodge 653 of Fontana. His hobbies included coin collecting, baseball, hunting and telling jokes. His son, Michael, said his father's lifelong passion was horse racing.

He was preceded in death by his wife and his brother Frank.

In addition to his son, Michael of Camarillo, he is survived by daughters Jean Metcalf of Madras, Ore., Sandra Neal of Long Beach, Judi Dempsey of Carlsbad, Kym Murphy of Carlsbad; 10 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Services will be private for the family.

Arrangements are under the direction of Guardian Memorial Funeral Directors in Oxnard.

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