Ruby Murphy, grandmother of state Sen. Robert Gordon’s (D-38) wife, Gail Gordon, passed away yesterday at 108, PolitickerNJ has learned.
Born in 1906 in Benton, Illinois, Murphy was Illinois’ oldest living resident. She lived long enough, friends and family say, to recall living through some of the nation’s most historic moments: Pearl Harbor in 1941, women’s suffrage movements in the 1910’s and 1920’s, and Illinois’ last public hanging in 1928.
“What I found fascinating about her is just the amount of American history that she saw,” senator Gordon said of his late grandmother-in-law. “I remember asking her, ‘Ruby, who is the president you remembered,’ and she said Teddy Roosevelt.”
A devout Christian and staunch conservative, Murphy was married twice. Her mother and her sister lived to 109 and 105, respectively, and at 100 years old she changed her name to Elizabeth. She is survived by Mrs. Gordon, who fondly recalls her grandmother’s fervor for participating in the political process.
“She certainly believed in exercising your right to vote and stewardship and those things that some people don’t believe in anymore. She never missed a vote. The last person she voted for was Romney,” Mrs. Gordon said. “The only Democrat she said she’d ever vote for was Bob.”
“But she was a good person and lived every one of her 108 years and will be missed,” she added.
Murphy would have been 109 in October.