Thursday, December 7, 2023

Nancy Murphy

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Feb. 14, 1955-March 23, 2023


Retired Detective Sergeant Nancy Murphy, 68, Minot, ND, passed away suddenly on Thursday, March 23, 2023, at Trinity Hospital, surrounded by family and friends who will continue to honor her legacy of service and commitment to community. Nancy, a Valentine’s Day baby, was born in Kalispell, Montana, in 1955 and lived a life of sacrifice and service to individuals and organizations across North Dakota. Nancy graduated from Cando High School in 1973, and then attended Minot State University before joining the Police Academy.

Nancy’s impact on local and state communities will continue long after her death. She was the only woman in her class at the Police Academy and helped broaden the field of law enforcement for women. ‘Murph,’ as she was known in the department, served as a police officer in Minot for decades and was awarded sergeant detective rank in 1997. After retiring from the police force, Nancy continued her service to Minot by acting as the Coordinator for the Victim’s Assistance Academy for ND at Minot State University. She was respected for her advocacy, innovation, and development of domestic violence awareness and victim services locally and statewide. Many regional law enforcement officers and those in the domestic violence prevention community will proudly tell you–she trained them. Whether it was training a room full of people, or helping individuals escape violence, Nancy’s voice and legacy of service extends beyond her death.

Nancy acted as a second mother to her three nieces and her nephew, bragging about their accomplishments, attending sporting events, and never missing a birthday, or other major life milestone. As a middle child of seven, Nancy was the rock of the family, known for keeping everyone in line. Her family leaned on her to organize family events and travel, leading Nancy to jokingly refer to herself as their mother’s ‘favorite child

Nancy loved to travel, collect pottery, create arts and crafts, and listen to 70s and 80s country rock. Most of all, she was dedicated to serving the Minot community and will be remembered for her empathy, kindness, and selflessness.

Nancy was preceded in death by her father, Jim Murphy; her mother, Winifred Murphy Penfield; and her older brother Steven Murphy. She is survived by siblings, Marilyn, Janet, and Bill, all residing in Fargo; Dan, in Memphis, Tennessee, and Karla, in Missoula, Montana; nieces and nephew, Jennifer, Carly, Meegan, and Andrew; great-nieces and great-nephews; and countless friends.

Memorial Service: Tuesday, March 28, 2023, at 1:00 pm at West Minot Church of God.

Visitation: Monday from 5 to 7 pm at Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot.

Interment: Sacred Heart Catholic Cemetery, Cando, ND.

In lieu of flowers, donations are always welcome at the Domestic Violence Crisis Center, Minot, ND.

The service will be livestreamed for the public to view and can be accessed by going to the Thompson-Larson Funeral home website:

Those wishing to sign the online register and share memories may access the online obituaries section at (

Published by The Minot Daily News, March 27, 2023.

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