Charles E. 'Kayo' Murphy
Charles E. “Kayo” Murphy, 92, of St. Joseph passed away Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, at the Whitcomb Tower in St. Joseph.
A celebration of life service will be held at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 4, 2018, at Starks & Menchinger Chapel, 2650 Niles Road, St. Joseph, with the Rev. James Whitman officiating. Military honors provided by North Berrien Military Rites Team will follow the service. Burial will take place at Hickory Bluff Cemetery at a later date. Friends may visit from 10 a.m. until the time of service Thursday at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to Caring Circle Hospice. Those wishing to leave a condolence may do so online at www.starks-menchinger.com.
Kayo was born Jan. 2, 1926, in Blue Creek, W.Va., to Oscar and Bertha (Dawson) Murphy. He was a graduate of East Bank High School in 1943. Kayo went on to proudly serve his county in the U.S. Navy from Nov. 18, 1943, until he was honorably discharged on Jan. 4, 1946. During his time serving our country in World War II he was aboard USS Goldfinch YMS 306 and the USS Leary DD879. On May 7, 1945, he wed Helen Breedlove in Orange, Texas. Kayo worked at the D.C. Cook Plant, American Electric Power for 35 years before retiring in 1988. He was a senior reactor operator and a production supervisor. He was an integral part in operating the control room in the 1970s when the cook plant went online for the first time and produced power. Kayo also enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping, gardening and raising honey bees.
Charles is survived by his sons, Richard “Dick” (Jill) Murphy of St. Joseph, and Mark (Debbie) Murphy of Stevensville; grandchildren: Jason (Mary Ann) Murphy of Grand Rapids, Sean Murphy of Eau Claire, Kate (Cory) Bartz of Stevensville, Daniel (Lauren) Murphy of St. Joseph, and Kim (Joe) Battista of St. Joseph; great-grandchildren: Caleb Murphy, Charlie Bartz, Jack Murphy, Mason Bartz and Ophelia Battista; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his loving wife, Helen on Nov. 8, 2012; and his brothers: Gerald Murphy, Duane Murphy and Troy Murphy.