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Kathryn Lois (Kathy)  Murphy

Obituary for Kathryn Lois (Kathy) Murphy

July 29, 1930 - June 11, 2020
San Mateo, California | Age 89


Kathryn Lois (Kathy) Murphy
Kathy passed peacefully at home surrounded by her children having lost her nearly six-year battle with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP).
Kathryn Lois (Kathy) Murphy was born on July 29, 1930 in Oconomowoc, WI, the fourth of William and Barbara Kiewatt's five children. She grew up in Arcata, CA, where she graduated from Arcata High School. She attended Humboldt State University and then relocated to San Francisco where she went to work for James F. Waters Automotive Dealerships. There she met her future husband William (Bill) Murphy. They married in 1958, purchased a home in San Mateo, and started a family that grew to six children: Barbara (Mike Sternberger), Tim (Patty), Moira (Rob Trabert), Martha (Steve Darcy), Toby (Alan Galindez), and Sheila (Jim Cerna). Kathy was a dedicated homemaker. When her children became school-aged she went back to work, eventually retiring from the San Mateo County Housing Authority in 2000. In retirement, she and Bill enjoyed many years of traveling locally and internationally.
Kathy lost the love of her life when Bill passed away in 2011 after 53 beautiful years of marriage. Kathy leaves eight grandchildren: Zachary (Yoko), Hayley, Spencer, Charley, Olivia, Cameron, Emily and Georgia; as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Kathy was preceded in death by her parents and siblings: James Kiewatt, William Kiewatt, Beverly Ayers and Monica Heistuman.
Kathy was a very active parishioner of St. Catherine's Catholic Church in Burlingame and with many church and charity organizations including St. Vincent de Paul Society, St. Catherine's Mothers' Club and Siena Social Club. Kathy loved to be surrounded by her family. Everyone was welcome at the Murphy house where for 60 years she enjoyed keeping busy gardening, baking and decorating; as well as creating countless sewing, knitting, quilting, needlepoint and upholstery projects. Kathy was full of energy and rarely rested or took a break, as she loved to walk, ride her bike, take tennis and golf lessons and practice yoga. She even participated in the over 7-mile Bay to Breakers once. Typical birthday and Mother's Day gifts for our Mom reflected her athletics: bikes, ping pong table, roller skates, jump rope, basketball hoop, treadmill, weights and pedometer. Kathy's most fulfilling role in life was being a wife, mother, grandmother and beloved aunt. Her favorite moments were when gathering her family and friends at her home for deliciously prepared meals and fresh baked desserts, accompanied by lots of conversation, music, games and laughter.
Friends and family are invited to a funeral mass (scheduled at a later date) to be held at St. Catherine of Siena Church (1310 Bayswater Ave, Burlingame). A celebration of life memorial will be held following the service (location to be announced). The family requests donations in lieu of flowers and suggests as recipients: CurePSP (, Mission Hospice, San Mateo ( or St. Vincent de Paul Society ( Please email to be added to a list for notification of dates of services.

Services Pending. Please check back for further information.

Suggested Memorial Donations

  • St. Catherine of Siena Church
    1310 Bayswater Avenue
    Burlingame,, CA 94010
  • Mission Hospice
    1670 S. Amphlett Blvd, Suite 300
    San Mateo , CA 94403

Arrangements By

Crosby-N. Gray & Co. - FD-96

2 Park Road
Burlingame, CA 94010
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