Joyce E. Blair

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CROSS PLAINS–Joyce E. (Murphy) Blair, age 92, of Cross Plains, died peacefully at home on July 30, 2020.  She was born on July 1, 1928, in Dane County, to Joseph L. and Gladys (Garfoot) Murphy. She grew up in rural Pine Bluff and graduated from Mount Horeb High School.  

As a single parent, her devotion to her four children was unmatched. She worked hard all her life including several years at Badger Ordinance, SPL, Oakwood, and Rest Haven nursing homes, finally retiring at age 81. She was a member of St. Francis Xavier Church and Cross Plains American Legion Auxiliary (Unit 245). She proudly carried our flag in parades for many years.

Her passions were bowling and football, but bowling came first. She bowled until she was 81.  She could talk football intelligently with anyone, and especially loved Brett Favre, Aaron Rodgers and…Tom Brady! She enjoyed beer, her family and friends, talking sports, and Pall Mall cigarettes. There are not enough words to capture her spirit.

Joyce is survived by her four children, Debby (Brad) Niebuhr, Tim (Julie Sutter-) Blair, Lorie (Al) Fees and Gloria (Steve) Murray; four grandsons, Paul (Heather) and Scott Niebuhr, Craig (Allison) Murray and Patrick (Paige) Blair; and two great-grandchildren, Sam and Elise Murray.  The last of the Murphy family to pass, she was preceded in death by her parents and six siblings. There will be a private graveside service.

The family would like to express deep gratitude to their sister, Deb, for retiring early to move in with Joyce and giving her the best possible care and life the past 15 months. Online condolences may be made at

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