Argusta “Ann” Murray
October 13, 1932 ~ March 28, 2021 (age 88)
Sister Argusta “Ann” Murray was born on October 13, 1932, in Richmond,
Arkansas, to loving parents Thomas and Julia Dunn-Parker who nurtured her, a
sister Mary Ponder, and brothers Travis and Charles Montue into becoming
strong, independent, loving, dedicated and inspiring individuals.
Sister Murray showed signs of leadership early in her life. She attended school
with dedication and excitement. She assumed assigned responsibilities of the
farm on which they lived and showed great interest in singing in school talent
shows and the church choir. She was always ready and eager to share her God
given gift of singing whenever the opportunity presented itself.
Sister Murray moved to San Diego, California in the early forties where she joined
the Mount Zion Baptist Church and sang in its Youth Choir. Later she married
Clennon Murray who served as a career Chief Petty Officer for 21 years in the
United States Navy. Together Clennon (now deceased) and Sister Murray raised a
family of 8 children, consisting of 5 girls and 3 boys. In the fifties, she joined
Mount Erie Baptist Church located in the old Frontier Navy Military Housing area
of Point Loma. In the sixties, she joined Second Baptist Church in Linda Vista
while residing in the Linda Vista Navy Military Housing area.
As a single parent some years later, Sister Murray relied on her faith in God to
sustain her and the values she learned in childhood to get her through the tough
times. With life unfolding at a rapid pace, 8 children to feed, clothe, educate and
guide, she reaffirmed to herself and God that she would accept the challenge.
Through her faith she realized that God had not brought her this far to leave her.
She reared all 8 of her children, who today are pursuing their own successful
careers and endeavors in life. Sadly, David L. Murray, third born son, preceded
her in death in 1993. David was an anointed and gifted singer, musician and choir
director in his own right, who ministered throughout San Diego County and
beyond, teaching, mentoring, singing and Praising the Lord!
While solely rearing her children, Sister Murray worked for the San Diego Unified
School District as a yard guard for a number of years. She was subsequently
accepted and participated in a special pilot parent-to-teacher program and
completed over a 10-year period an AA in Child Development at San Diego City
College, a BA in Early Childhood Education and a BA in Liberal Arts and African
American Studies at San Diego State University and Alabama University.
Additionally, during the time she worked toward acquiring her degrees, she held a
Teacher's Assistant position for 15 years at Ocean View/John F. Kennedy
Elementary School and worked tirelessly with the PTAs at Ocean View/John F.
Kennedy, Samuel Gompers Junior High School and Abraham Lincoln High School
where all her children attended school. In subsequent years, after obtaining her
teaching credential, she worked with the San Diego Unified School District and
Mead Child Development Center as a highly respected and sought-after lead
teacher for another 15 plus years.
Sister Murray always found time to volunteer in the schools, she willingly gave
many hours during the walk-out at Lincoln High in 1969. She worked with the
redevelopment of Abraham Lincoln High School and walked the halls of the
school encouraging students to attend class, counseling those students who
were angry, discouraged and depressed. She showed special attention to those
students who exhibited social, psychological, and/or emotional problems.
As a steadfast community/social activist, Sister Murray continued her community
work in and with the Urban League, Eastern Star, NAACP, Neighborhood House,
Lincoln High Booster Club, Senior Citizens Christmas activities and the
Supplemental Food Exchange Program to those in need.
Sister Murray never compromised her religious affiliations. She rejoined in the
mid-sixties and continued to work faithfully for many years as a member of the
Mount Erie Baptist Church congregation and choir. She is also known as one of
the first female African American Gospel radio announcers in San Diego for 92.5
FM and KMJC AM Radio. She was also a member for many years of the Radio
Announcers Guild and held the office of secretary for that organization as well.
Additionally, she worked for years with the Gospel Music Workshop of America,
founded by Dr. Reverend James Cleveland. She was a member and State
President of the National Singing Quartets of America, Inc.
Sister Murray is one of San Diego's and this nation's greatest African American
role models. On October 13, 2017, the San Diego City Council issued two awards
in Sister Murray’s name. The first award was a “Special Accommodation for
Community Service”. The second award was proclaimed “October 13th Ann
Murray Day” in America’s Finest City of San Diego, California”. She was a true
servant who was a trailblazer and mentor, who was thankful, prayerful,
committed, giving, humble and devoted. She tremendously touched everyone’s
life that she came in contact with and will be greatly missed forever.
The journey from this life to heaven was completed by Sister Murray on Sunday,
March 28, 2021, at 3:50 p.m. where she transitioned peacefully to be with her
Preceding Sister Murray in death was her mother Julia Dunn-Parker, father
Thomas A. Parker, brother Charles Montue, sister Mary Ponder, husband Clennon
Murray and son David L. Murray.
Sister Murray leaves to cherish her memories, children C. “Wayne” Murray (wife,
Rhonda Murray), Thomas O. Murray (wife, Kate Murray), Brenda J. Murray,
Deborah L. Tavasti, Linda J. Murray, Renae C. Murray, Mary L. Murray, brother
Travis Montue, aunt Margaret Dunn-Robinson, uncle Leonard Dunn,
grandchildren Jamilah, Amanisha, LaReena, Tanasha, Gabrielle, Danielle,
Jonathan, Brandon, Sierra, great-grandchild Christopher, and a host of nieces,
nephews, cousins and other family and friends. As Sister Murray would say in her
signature MC greeting “Praise the Lord Everybody”, we say farewell to a good
and faithful servant until we meet again! Amen!
A PUBLIC WALK THROUGH VIEWING ON WEDNESDAY, APRIL 14TH FROM 4PM-7PM AT ANDERSON-RAGSDALE MORTUARY.
"An intimate family funeral service on Thursday, April 15th at 11am PST is by invitation only at an undisclosed location (due to current county COVID19 guidelines and limitations). The funeral service will be followed by a burial service. There will be a livestream of the visitation, funeral and burial services via Facebook Live on the Sister Ann Murray Facebook page.
If you have any questions please email us at: SisterAnnMurray@gmail.com or message us on the Sister Ann Murray Facebook page."
“Love Offerings/Donations are welcomed. Please place in an envelope and provide to the family member Brenda Murray at the Visitation and Funeral Services.
As another option for submitting Love Offerings/Donations is to use CashApp at $ArgustaMurray The Murray Family thanks you all in advance for your love and generosity!
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