Evelyn Rapee Murphy Schmitt, 92, died unexpectedly but peacefully in her home at RiverMead Retirement Community, Peterborough, NH, on October 2.
She is survived by her daughter Sharon Murphy Kissel (Peter) of Washington, DC, sons William J. Murphy III (Hilary Miskoe), of Concord, NH, and Thomas C. Murphy (Carol Presley) of Vero Beach, FL, stepsons Stephen Schmitt (Sue) and Peter Schmitt, grandchildren Kristen Murphy (Joey Nigels), Tyler Murphy (Carleigh Deluca), Patricia Schmitt, Robert Schmitt, Karen Uhll (Brendan), Kristen Schmitt, Andy Schmitt (Sarah), Stephanie Lane (Greg), Janet Fey (Alan), and five great-grandchildren. Evelyn was predeceased by her husband Robert Schmitt, her parents Doris Monroe and Frank Rapee, her daughter Deborah Lynn Murphy, and her stepson Christopher Schmitt.
Evelyn was born in Washington DC on November 26, 1926, attended Chevy Chase Elementary School, Paul Junior High School, and graduated in 1944 from Calvin Coolidge High School in Washington. She attended the College of William and Mary and George Washington University. She received her B.S. in Education from Gwynedd-Mercy College in 1973, after raising her three children and while working at Sperry Corporation.
Evelyn was employed by Sperry Corporation (Unisys) for twenty years before retiring in 1984, rising to become Manager of Benefits Communication and Education. She married the love of her life, Robert Schmitt, on November 20, 1982 in the Church of the Messiah in Gwynedd, Pennsylvania. Evelyn and Bob were among the original residents when they moved to the Rivermead Retirement Community in Peterborough in 1996.
Evelyn was an active member of the Episcopal Church, and served many years as a vestry member, Chair of the Christian Education Committee and Church School teacher. She was also an enthusiastic member of P.E.O. International Sisterhood, serving as Chapter Z (PA) President, Treasurer and Secretary. She was a member of the Bucks County (PA) Historical Society and the Peterborough (NH) Historical Society, and a proud lifetime member of Clan Munro Association, USA. She was a devoted sister of Gamma Phi Beta, having pledged as a freshman at William and Mary.
Between her busy career and devotion to family, Evelyn found time to volunteer for many worthy causes, including: tour guide at Graeme Park, PTA officer, Girl Scout leader, community library volunteer, Hatboro-Horsham School Board. In retirement, Evelyn served as editor of RiverMedia, the newsletter for her retirement community. She was also an avid photographer, and loved to document her various travels as well as her local environment. She received numerous awards from the Unisys Camera Club for her photographic skills.
Evelyn was loved by all who knew her for her generosity, intellect, independent spirit, and lively wit, and for eagerly welcoming all those she met. Burial will be on October 18 at Whitemarsh Memorial Gardens in Pennsylvania following funeral services at Church of the Messiah. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Evelyn’s name may be made to the Church of the Messiah, 1001 DeKalb Pike, Lower Gwynedd, PA 19002; Hancock (NH) Historical Society, 7 Main St., Hancock, NH 03449; University of New Hampshire Foundation, Doris M. Rapee Memorial Scholarship Fund, 15 Stafford Ave., Durham, NH 03824; the College of William and Mary Scholarship Impact Fund, PO Box 1693, Williamsburg, VA 23187 or All Saints Episcopal Church, 51 Concord Street, Peterborough, NH 03458.
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