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Murray was born September 21, 1923, in Lewistown, Montana. As a University of Montana forestry student, he was a member of the 1941 Forest Service "fire-fighting" squadron and a smokejumper in 1942 when he had at least two fire jumps. During college, he was a wrestler, a marksman on the rifle team, and an aviation cadet. He earned his wings as a second lieutenant with the Army Air Force in 1944. After the military, he had a career as an engineer-geologist. Murray was working as an engineer-geologist with Engineering Consultants, Quezon City, Philippines when he died on November 9, 1974 at the age of 51. Cause of death was drowning. He is buried in Wheat Ridge, Colorado.
Smokejumping; Smokejumpers -- United States; National Smokejumper Association; Wildfire fighters; Obituaries
National Smokejumper Association, "Smokejumper Obituary: Athearn, Murray James (Missoula 1942)" (2020). Smokejumper Obituaries. 419.