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Barney J. Murphree

Barney J. Murphree, 69, of Island Park Road, Ipswich, husband of Janet E. Howard, died Tuesday, March 2, 2010 in his home following a sudden illness.

Born August 15, 1940 son of the late Robert and Annie Mae (McKinnon) Murphree he was  raised in Birmingham Alabama where he attended public school. An avid athlete, he played  football and baseball. The talented  baseball player he was, he was signed by the Cleveland Indians  as a junior in high-school.  Leaving  school after the 11th grade, he enlisted in the US Navy, serving from 1958 to 1964 as a Hospital Corpsman.

In the Navy he met his first wife, the late Shirley (Gifford) Murphree who he  married in 1962. Mr. Murphree  earned his GED in the  Navy and following his discharge he went to school nights at North Eastern University and North Shore Community College where he   received  his associates degree. In 1976 he was one of the four people picked to be the first technicians to operate the newly invented CaT Scan machine at Massachusetts General Hospital. He remained as their  Assistant Chief of CaT scan through 1994.

He later worked as chief x-ray tech in Dracut, Peabody, Brookline and at Boston Children’s Hospital.

He loved spending time with his children and was active in coaching sports and booster clubs, and always made time to get to their plays or games.

After leaving work due to health reasons he worked for several business in the Ipswich and Danvers area. He became a member of the Polish American Club in Danvers  where he met his current wife Janet Howard. They were married in November 2009.

Barney was a life long sports fan and loved the New England Patriots and Boston Red Sox. He was an avid University of Alabama Football fan and loved NASCAR racing. He enjoyed going to the  Ipswich  VFW Post #1093 and the St. Lawrence Literary Society Club of Ipswich, where he loved to sing karaoke. He enjoyed spending time with his good friend Dale and loved being on the ocean.

In addition to his wife  Janet Howard, he is survived by a daughter Rebecca Crane and her husband Eric of Danvers; a son, Barney Murphree, Jr. and his wife Sueann of Braintree; six grandchildren,  Victoria and Melanie Crane of Danvers, Shawn, Jennifer, Meagan and Erin Murphree all of Braintree; two brothers,  Bill Murphree and his wife Faye of  AL and Phillip McKinnon and his wife Susan of FL; two sisters, Betty Armstrong and her husband Bill of AL and Linda Motzi and her husband John of Newburyport,and eight nephews and nieces.

His funeral service will be held 10 am Saturday, March 6, in the First Church of Ipswich, Meetinghouse Green, Ipswich. Family and friends are respectfully welcomed. Visiting hours will be Friday 6 to 9 pm in the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home, 6 High St., Ipswich with a service by Ipswich American Legion Post #80 at 7 pm. Memorial contributions in his name may be made to the Ipswich Humane Group, P.O. Box 873, Ipswich, MA 01938.

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