Cover photo for Martin "Marty" R. Murk's Obituary
Martin "Marty" R. Murk Profile Photo

Martin "Marty" R. Murk

April 30, 1928 — June 4, 2020

Martin “Marty” R. Murk was born April 30, 1928 in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and passed away peacefully at age 92 on June 4, 2020.

Marty is survived by his wife Vera (nee Konon) of 69 years; his children Laura (Peter) Holbus, and Nancy (Jeff) Leonard; grandchildren Ben (Stephanie) Holbus, Zachary Holbus, Sarah (Geoff) Schweikhard, Andrew Leonard and Stacey (Eric) Becker; great grandchildren Ryan, Katie, Jack, Cole, Leo and Emily. Marty is preceded in death by son Robert “Bob” (2011).

Marty was a wildlife artist and an avid outdoorsman who traveled Africa and all of North America hunting and fishing. He was a paratrooper in the 11th Airborne during WWII and occupation of Japan. Marty entered the service as a minor in 1945 with four friends using his skills as an artist to forge a notary seal (carved backwards) on their applications which ultimately led to their entry in the service. Upon return from the war, he was a draftsman for Simmons Company. He went on to Layton School of Art, and later worked for Bert S. Gittens Agency & Eisenberg Studios before embarking on his own as a freelance artist. In addition to his freelance business he was asked, and became the art director for the Thorton-Reickert Agency. His love for wildlife art drew him to enter the prestigious Federal Duck Stamp contest that he won in 1977. He then won the 1979 Wisconsin Trout Stamp and the Wisconsin Duck Stamp Design contests. He also designed Wisconsin’s first Great Lakes Salmon and Trout stamp and the first North American Endangered Species Conservation stamps in 1982. He has been Artist of the Year in several organizations including Ducks Unlimited. His works have been exhibited nationally in galleries and museums including the Smithsonian, Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, and The Milwaukee Public Museum. Marty enjoyed painting in acrylics and sketching until his last days at Three Pillars in Dousman, Wisconsin. Marty’s infectious smile, sense of humor, and passion for cooking will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Family and friends will gather for a celebration of Marty’s life at a later date. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Angels Grace Hospice, Oconomowoc WI or the charity of your choice.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Martin "Marty" R. Murk, please visit our flower store.


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