SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Irene Mabel Stanley Murphy passed away at Maine Coast Memorial Hospital on Sunday, May 3, 2015, at the age of 81. Irene was born on June 28, 1933, in Bar Harbor, the daughter of Chester W. and Bertha Robinson Stanley. She grew up in the family house on Main Street, built by her great-great-grandfather, with one brother, six sisters and her maternal grandmother. Being number three in the Stanley family, she loved mothering her younger siblings.
Irene graduated from Pemetic High School in 1951 with her future husband, Carol C. Murphy. After high school, Irene went to Massachusetts Memorial Hospital and graduated as a registered nurse. She and Carol married in 1952 while she was in nursing school. They were married 62 years on Nov. 2, 2014.
Being married to a military man meant moving around a lot, which also meant she worked at numerous hospitals and nursing homes in Maine, Massachusetts and California. Upon Carol’s retirement from the military, they moved their family back to the home she grew up in. Once home, she worked at the area hospitals, Sonogee Nursing Home, The Medical Associates and did private duty. Her true calling was taking care of and helping people. She did all this while raising her seven children. After her retirement from nursing, Irene joined her husband in his caretaking/painting business. It was hard work, but she and Carol were together and she took great pride in her work. She also organized family members to rake the blueberry fields in Southwest Harbor for a few years. It gave her such pleasure to help the kids earn their school clothes money.
Irene is survived by her daughter, Julie M. Reed and husband, Jeffrey, of Southwest Harbor; her son Benjamin S. Murphy and wife, Jackie, of Southwest Harbor; her son James M. Murphy and his wife, Patti, of Surry, her son Robert W. Murphy and wife, Duanna, of Southwest Harbor; her daughter Gina M. Bennett and husband, Mark, of Sorrento; her son Glenn A. Murphy and wife, Carol Ann, of Tremont, and her daughter Lisa M. Melcher and husband, Samuel, of Bowdoin; 20 grandchildren: Angela Paulsen, Kristopher Reed, Emily Matteson, Megan Lunt, Jessica Murphy, Jaime Lee Reed, Jeremy Murphy, Jennifer Murphy, Jodi Murphy, Kyla Murphy, Katie Murphy, Brittney Burne, Robert S. Murphy, Hannah Murphy, Joseph Bennett, Andrew Bennett, Charles Bennett, Kathleen Murphy, Mikaela Melcher and Allison Melcher; 10 great-grandchildren: brother, Ralph W. Stanley, sisters; Nancy S. Stone, Myrna S. Ritterskamp, and Mary S. Abbott.
Irene was predeceased by her husband of 62 years, Carol C. Murphy; and three sisters; Ruth S. Holmes, Esther S. Willis and Phoebe S. Collins and her great-grandson Noah Matteson of Tremont.
A graveside service will be held Saturday, May 23, 2015, at 11 a.m. at the Mount Height Cemetery in Southwest Harbor, with a reception following at the Tremont Congregational Church.