Genesee "Jenny" Rae Murfitt passed away Wednesday, January 21, 2015, at age 72. She was born August 31, 1942, in Enterprise, to Bertrand and Constance (Butner) DePierris. Jenny cherished growing up in Enterprise on her grandparents' ranch, which nurtured her never ending love of Oregon. She embraced the values of growing up in a rural, intimate and self-reliant community that shaped her personal characteristics. She was loyal, tough, adventurous, sentimental and loved to have fun and laugh.
Jenny's family moved to The Dalles, where she graduated from high school in 1960, and during a summer job cooking on a wheat ranch, she began a lifelong love affair with a charismatic, "150 lbs of twisted steel and sex appeal" ranch hand, Jim Murfitt. They married in June of 1962, and moved to Portland, where he eventually became a career firefighter. Jenny's professional life began as a model for Jantzen, however, her curiosity and sense of adventure led her to a variety of jobs, ultimately spending 21 years at Mercantile, owned by her sister, Victoria Taylor. She retired three years ago and was honored to volunteer at Providence St. Vincent and Legacy Good Samaritan medical centers.
After moving to Portland, Jenny and Jim quickly had three beloved sons, leading a busy life with school, sports, good cooking and full of fun. They took numerous road trips to visit friends, where they all could preserve close relationships with their large and colorful family of aunts, uncles and cousins. Jenny felt her greatest accomplishment was her family and role of mother, mother-in-law and grandmother. She spoiled her grandchildren, Remy, Sofia, Max and Lily, and treasured the time she spent with them.
Jenny was never without a book and frequently gave books as a gift. She read dozens of British mystery novels, American thrillers and loved to watch old Hollywood movie classics. Everyone appreciated her unique sense of style and that she lived her life unfiltered and independent. Jenny will be immeasurably missed and left us too early, but with a lot of great memories, funny stories and laughter.
She was preceded in death by her father, Bertrand DePierris; mother, Constance (Butner) Thrasher DePierris; and husband, Jim Murfitt.
She is survived by her sons, Rhett (Rebecca) Murfitt, Marc (Tracy) Murfitt and Eric (Rachel) Murfitt; sisters, Victoria (Kirk) Taylor and Anne Thrasher; and grandchildren, Remy Murfitt, Sofia Murfitt, Max Murfitt and Lily Murfitt.
A memorial service will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, February 21, 2015, at St. Michael the Archangel Church, 1701 S.W. Fourth Avenue, Portland.
Remembrances may be made to Providence Portland Medical Foundation Cancer Research.