MURPHY, Mary Lou (Radford) Of Needham, age 85 passed away on May 25, 2019 at home, surrounded by her loving family (two weeks after enduring a major stroke). She was born on February 13, 1934 in Philadelphia, PA, a daughter of the late Guy and Evelyn Mae (Siders) Radford. Mary Lou was married to the late Leo E. Murphy Jr. for 25 years.
Mary Lou was an active parishioner of Saint Joseph’s Parish for over fifty years. She and Leo were very involved in fundraising and community building in the parish for many years.
Mary Lou was predeceased by her sons Leo Edward Murphy III and Matthew Guy Murphy, who passed away in 1993 and 1992 respectively. She established The Leo and Matthew Murphy Fund for individuals affected by the hardships of living with HIV/AIDS (and Hemophilia).
Mary Lou was a volunteer advocate, and later became the Vice President of the Committee of Ten Thousand (COTT). COTT is a grassroots, peer-led, education, advocacy, and support organization for persons with Hemophilia and HIV/AIDS. COTT advocates for disenfranchised chronic disease communities, especially those communities dependent on safe national blood supply. Her work with COTT parlayed into counseling those effected by the HIV/AIDs pandemic and their families.
Mary Lou's volunteering and community involvement led to lasting connections and many cherished friendships. After the death of her beloved pet companion Bowie, Mary Lou traveled independently across the pond to England to visit friends of 75 years. Following her return she endured a second knee replacement at age 84 motivated to get back to Friday night dances. A month previously she traveled with her family to California for her grandson’s wedding where she danced the night away under the Los Angeles stars.
Mary Lou was a woman of style, with an artistic touch and great compassion, who found beauty in nature and the complexities of life. She was a classy lady of great dignity whose bright light has extinguished and will forever be missed.
She is survived by her daughter Mary Beth Hunter and her husband Michael of Belchertown; 2 grandchildren Alicia Hunter with her boyfriend Aaron Lakota of Northampton and Christopher Hunter with his wife Nadia of Los Angeles. She leaves her beloved twelve-year-old great grandchild Mallary Hunter, the youngest in the maternal line of four generations. She also leaves behind beloved grand-pets Daisy, George, Emmy and Butterscotch.
Visitation at the George F. Doherty & Sons Funeral Home, 1305 Highland Ave., NEEDHAM, Monday, June 3 from 8:30-9:30am followed by a Funeral Mass in St. Joseph’s Church, Needham at 10:00am. Relatives and friends kindly invited. Interment in Needham Cemetery. The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Mary Lou be made to COTT c/o Chad Blair, 4913 Randel Rd., Oneida, NY 13421 or Overlook Hospice 88 Masonic Home Rd., Charlton, MA 01507.