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Dave W. Murray

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Welcome and thanks for visiting

My father, Dave W. Murray, was a science fiction and fantasy writer and editor, an elementary school teacher for 32 years, a photographer, a tour guide, and an amateur historian. At different times, he managed a shoe store and sold insurance. As an assistant Scoutmaster, he went the extra mile to earn the Woodbadge recognition. He was a elder in his church.

On May 17, 2012, he had successful open-heart surgery, but the next morning he suffered a serious stroke to the left hemisphere of his brain. About three weeks later at 1:46 AM on Wednesday, June 6, 2012, my father passed beyond this life to begin his next great adventure. If you are curious, I blogged the entire event. People also left encouraging messages for us during that time.

Family, friends and former students have asked for a place to leave messages about my father or to the family: messages of hope, memories of things they have done together, inspirational messages, and so on. I created this page just for that purpose.


Note: If you do not see the videos below, try these two things:

Dave W. Murray Memorial Video #1: 1940-1957

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Dave W. Murray Memorial Video #2: 1958-1986

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Dave W. Murray Memorial Video #3: 1987-2012

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On Wednesday, June 6, 2012, David W. Murray of Sacramento, age 71, entered into rest peacefully.

Born in 1940 in St. Paul, Minnesota, his family moved to Columbus, Ohio, when he was three and to Visalia, CA, when he was six. Dave attended schools in Visalia and graduated from College of the Sequoias and then Fresno State University. He earned his M.A. in Education from Pepperdine University.

His teaching career began at Pioneer Elementary (Hanford, CA) while earning a lifetime teaching credential. In 1968, he moved to Arroyo Grande, CA and taught grades 2-6 at Grover Heights Elementary (Grover City, CA) for 30 years. Fourth and fifth grades were Dave’s favorites to teach, sharing his love of California history and science with his students. He retired from teaching in 1995.

In 1999, Dave and Marlene, his wife of almost 50 years, moved to Sacramento. He suffered a stroke the following year but eventually made a full recovery. He worked for the California Dept. of Parks and Recreation as a tour guide at Sutter’s Fort, State Indian Museum, Governor’s Mansion, Leland Stanford Mansion, and California State Capitol Museum. He enjoyed sharing his knowledge with visitors and delighted in learning from guests who had lived in the mansions.

Dave had a life-long love of writing and reading science-fiction and fantasy. He was an active member of a Sacramento writers group, the Warped Spacers. He also had an avid interest in the natural world and made a study of biology, geography, astronomy, and geology. He loved camping and hiking, and he served as a staff member at a YMCA camp in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. He was active in the Boys Scouts of America, and completed Wood Badge, the most advanced training available for Scout leaders. He was an ordained elder in the Presbyterian Church USA and enjoyed attending services at Westminster Presbyterian Church and The Experience in Sacramento when his work schedule permitted.

On May 18, he had a stroke following heart surgery and suffered from complications until his passing. His parents, Wm. Donald and Frances Murray of Visalia, preceded him in death. He is survived by his wife and son, Marlene and Will Murray of Sacramento, and his sister and brother-in-law, Lois and David Feleay of Cambria.

It was Dave’s wish not to have a public memorial service, but you may leave memories of Dave and comments for his family at

In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made on his behalf to the California State Parks Foundation at or The Nature Conservancy at

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65 thoughts on “Dave W. Murray”

  1. Dave was a great guy, I worked with him briefly at the Governor's Mansion and when he joined me at the State Parks outdoor exhibit at the CA State Fair a few years ago. He couldn't be out in the sun but he braved the heat to weave on the loom and talk with visitors. So sorry to hear that we lost another wonderful member of our Parks family.

  2. Scotty Hodges &ndash

    Just getting to e-mail. We were all very sorry to hear of the loss of your father. He was a very nice person and added so much to the Capitol famly. He will be sorely missed. Our prayers to the family.

    1. Judy and Steve Prey

      Hi Royal

      Hope all is well with you and family. You can contact us at steveprey -at- earthlink -dot- net

  3. Hugs to you and your Mom. Your Dad will always be an amazing part of my life who helped make me the woman and Nurse I am…A blessing and gift to all who knew him. Thank you for sharing him with us.

  4. Judy and Steve Prey

    Well done Will and Marlene, this is a great memorial site for Dave. Loved the movies and his bio information.

    Judy and I are looking forward to seeing you and Marlene at a future Warped Spacers meeting (once Marlene is feeling better) to start up "Project Dave" and complete Dave's stories and get them published (in print or ePrint).

    Take care for now, and hope to see you both soon.

  5. Hi, Will and Marlene, We still have fond memories of CCAMS, and enjoy your Christmas letters. So sorry to hear of Dave's passing.; what a loss. I did not realize he had so many wonderful talents and interests. You've left a wonderful memorial! The pictures remind me so much of my family's. Thanks also for placing the obit in the SLO Tribune. Our love and condolences, Carol and Evan Lowman

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