Kendall James Murphy was born May 10, 1990, to Dwayne and Katrina (Lengacher) Murphy. He was welcomed home by his sister, Kelsie (Murphy) Miller, and grandparents, Bert and Barbara Lengacher and Steve and Jean Murphy.
Kendall graduated from Barr-Reeve High School in Montgomery, Indiana, in 2009. During high school he played tennis, basketball, and baseball, receiving varsity letters in each sport. He graduated from the University of Southern Indiana with a degree in sports management and minor in accounting. At the time of his accident he was an insurance agent for German American. Kendall coached the freshmen boys’ basketball team at Barr-Reeve from 2013-2017 and was taking over the 5th grade boys’ program for the 2017-18 season. His love for young children was evident in his daily life. He cherished his two nieces, Emma and Halle Miller. Any chance he got, he was playing hide-n-seek or beauty salon with them. His nephew, Micah Kendall, was born five months after his untimely death.
Kendall was a selfless man of God who loved spending time with family and friends. He had a true servant’s heart and captivating personality that would light up any room. His wittiness would make anyone laugh and have him making friends in no time. He didn’t know a stranger.
The day, November 10, 2017, will forever be etched in our hearts. It started as any day would. That evening, a call came in for an accident less than a mile from his house. Of course, Kendall responded as normal. He was exiting his personal vehicle when another responding firefighter drove up on the scene and hit Kendall, killing him instantly. Kendall started with the Montgomery Volunteer Fire Department in June 2016, following his father and grandfather’s footsteps, giving the Murphy family three generations of active firefighters.
Kendall is deeply missed by his many cousins, extended family, friends, and coworkers. No one misses him more than his fiancée, Jessica Padgett. They were to be married September 29, 2018.
The Barr-Reeve community has been very supportive in starting a scholarship in Kendall’s honor, The Viking Promise-Kendall Murphy Scholarship. It gives $100 to each incoming kindergarten student that has or starts a 529 college savings plan. His niece, Emma, was the very first recipient of this scholarship. Kendall was passionate about having no college debt. To help fund the scholarship, Jessica and his best friends have started an annual golf scramble and 5K. Kendall’s legacy will forever live in Barr-Reeve students.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.