Saturday, August 12, 2017

-30- for Murv Perry
Murvin Perry, 95, former Kent State Journalism School director, passed away Tuesday, August 1 in Johnson City, Tennessee.
Murv Perry

Kent State followed stays at South Dakota State, Iowa and Kansas State before stops at Ohio State and, finally, East Tennessee State.
Not bad for a South Dakota farm boy.
In retirement Murv was restoring his 1966 Mustang Fastback and 1935 Ford Cabriolet, and authoring “Murv’s Motoring Memories,” as he had for more than two decades for the Early Ford V-8 Club.
Murv’s obituary:
Murvin Henry Perry - Johnson City, Tenn.
April 28, 1922 – Aug. 1, 2017
Stop the presses!  A great journalist and muckraker has left the pressroom. 

Dr. Murvin Henry Perry of Johnson City, Tennessee passed away Tuesday, August 1, 2017 at the age of 95.  Murvin was born April 28, 1922 in Bruce, South Dakota. 

He moved to Johnson City in 1979 and retired from East Tennessee State University in 1988.  He is survived by his wife Rita married for 65 years, his five children, Gail, Mark, Scott and wife Heidi, Todd and Chris and wife Patty, and his grandchildren, Rebecca, Heather, Kent, Brock and Kristen.

He was the eldest of 10 children born to Earl and Lorraine Perry.  He was preceded in death by his brothers Lyle, Dale, and Wayne, and sisters Bonnie, Donna, and Doris.  He is survived by his three younger brothers Loran, Robert, and Ronald. 

He served in World War II in the Seebees on the South Pacific Island of Tonga Tabu.  He returned home to teach high school English in South Dakota.  He earned his Bachelor's degree from South Dakota State and his Master's and Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. 

His career started in 1945 at South Dakota State University in Brookings South Dakota.  In 1952 he moved to the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa, and in 1959 to Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas, and in 1964 to Kent State University in Kent, Ohio and in the summer of 1981 taught at the Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. In 1979 he moved to East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tennessee where he retired in 1988.

During a career spanning nearly 70 years, Dr. Perry played a national role in both professional journalism and higher education.  

He was a member of the first team of American journalists allowed to go behind the Iron Curtain.  He served as an officer of chapters of the Society of Professional Journalists and a member of its national committees on Freedom of Information and Historic Sites, as a member of the Accrediting Committee of the American Council for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications for 12 years and as a member of the screening committee for the Pulitzer Prizes.  

He was on a committee of journalists charged with selecting a journalist to go on a space flight when the Challenger exploded and the project was cancelled.  He played a leading role in the Ohio Newspaper Association's successful campaigns to develop and get sunshine laws passed and to defeat the bar association's efforts to close the courts. 

He taught at six universities, heading accredited professional programs at two. He was honored as a distinguished alumnus of South Dakota State University, for professional achievement by the Society of Professional Journalism, by Tennessee Right to Life for 32 years of pro-life service and by East Tennessee State University for Lifetime Achievement. 

He was a passionate organizer and advocate for the Right to Life movement since the Roe vs. Wade decision in 1973. 

His book, Murv's Motoring Memories, is a collection of anecdotes, written originally for his column in the newsletter, Ford Words, which he edited for the Early Ford V8 Club for more than 20 years. 

In the last days of his life he completed the writing of a book to be published on Amazon titled "Can We Save These United States?".

The Department of Communication at ETSU created the Murvin H. Perry Award for Creative Achievement, which each year honors a student for creative achievement.

Visitation will be at St. Mary's Catholic Church Friday, August 4, 2017 from 10 to 11:30 with a Funeral Mass to follow at 11:30. Burial at Mountain Home National Cemetery will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 2211 E. Lakeview Dr., Johnson City, TN 37601, in his name or to the Tennessee Right to Life.

Memories and condolences may be shared with the Perry family via .


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