"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer."
We are heartbroken to announce the passing of Iann Larry Murray, 50, of Spanish Fork, UT who left us Tuesday, July 11, 2023, after a brave battle with pancreatic cancer.
Iann was born on December 10, 1972, to parents Nan and Larry Murray. “EYE-an” (not “EE-un”) grew up in Springville, UT. After graduating from Springville High School in 1991 he went on to serve his country in The United States Navy. Iann graduated from naval schooling top of his class which gave him the opportunity to choose where to be stationed. He chose Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma where he worked as an aviation storekeeper. Soon after he married his childhood sweetheart, Audrey Lowe. Although they both later remarried, they remained friends. After leaving the Military, Iann began his career at Hydro Extrusions (formally known as Alcoa) where he remained a loyal and hardworking employee for the past 27 years. He also briefly served in the ARMY National Guard.
Iann's biggest passion in life was music. He was influenced by his father’s talent and love of music and began playing the guitar as a child. Iann was an extremely gifted musician. He was a well-known singer, songwriter, and performer in the local music community. To Iann, music was spiritual. Music was life. It was his outlet and connection to a higher power. He performed in many bands over the years; The Undecided, Flashpoint, Lucid 8, Sun Divide, and The Hardy Brothers to name a few. Although, he was most proud of being asked to join his dad’s band, Mixed Nuts. His dad was his hero.
Iann was a golden boy. He excelled at everything. He competed on the Springville Seals swim team; he lettered in Track and Field as a high school Freshman and received the newcomer of the year award for beating the school record in both the 100- and 400-meter dash. Iann did not often go to practice, he just showed up at the meets and won! He skipped school and rarely completed his homework but still managed to ace his exams. Iann was inherently smart, and he retained knowledge. He was an avid reader. His Mother fostered his love of reading, and he often went with her to the public library as a child. He loved used bookstores and mostly enjoyed Sci-Fi and Fantasy and was a huge fan of the DUNE series. He also loved Stephen King, Ernest Hemingway, and Charles Bukowski. Iann was a foodie and a mixologist. His specialty was eggs benedict and huevos rancheros. He had a knack for perfectly pairing his book with his beverage.
His early years were spent watching Star Wars and Godzilla and playing “rock band” with his little sister and the neighborhood kids. In the Summer he played outside all day in the field behind his house and would float down “the crick,” coming home with his eyes swollen shut due to hay fever. Summer nights were spent playing night games and sleeping out back under the stars. He rode his bike to the pool every day and made Kraft spaghetti and Tuna Helper for lunch. He participated in scouts and kicked butt in the pine wood derbies. He always had a book tucked under his arm and a cat to cuddle nearby. He met his best friend Brandon Johnson in Kindergarten at Sage Creek Elementary. Brandon stood by his side throughout all the highs and lows in life. They were more than friends, they were brothers. He looked forward to their annual boy's trip to Mesquite every year. Last year Brandon somehow talked him into going twice!
Iann was a family man. He married his second wife, Andrea Banks, in 1999 and quickly fell in love with her two children, Paige Kellam and Dylan Armstrong. He loved being their dad. Though this relationship was not permanent, they had a daughter together and remained friends throughout their life. Iann was a single father to his daughter, Lennon. He adored his “Lenny Lou”. She was the center of his universe. He was patient and kind and always put her needs first. I do not think he ever raised his voice or told her no. He would do anything for her, and she would do the same for him.
Iann began long distance running later in life and completed his first full marathon at age 40. He has medals and ribbons all over his house from numerous races, half marathons and 10k’s. Some of his favorites were “The Haunted Half” in Provo, “The Other Half” in Moab, and “The ET Full Moon Midnight Half Marathon” which ran along the Extraterrestrial Highway of the mysterious Area 51. He was even selected by his employer to represent Hydro in “The Oslo Marathon” in Norway. Iann loved Norway and always planned to return.
Iann had an offbeat sense of humor and a razor-sharp wit. He was an optimist and could make light of any situation. Although he was the life of the party, always pleasant and easy to be around, he was truly an introvert at heart. He found solace in nature and enjoyed hiking solo up Hobble Creek, Dibbles Canyon, and Monument Peak and he enjoyed snowshoeing Maple Canyon in the winter. Iann often traveled alone. He enjoyed long drives and taking road trips in his JEEP. He took many trips out to Moab and to Jerome, Arizona to stay in the haunted Grand Hotel.
Although we never imagined cancer would take his life so soon, we have come to accept that he was simply too good for this world. And we are grateful that he is now at peace, free of the pain and suffering he endured over the last 9 months. Iann will never be forgotten but forever remembered and missed by all who were fortunate enough to know him. He was one of the good guys. You can honor Iann by reading a book, turning the radio up, supporting live music, enjoying time in nature, being kind and quick to forgive, letting the car in front of you merge, and by living life to the fullest!
Iann was preceded in death by his grandparents, Max and Mina Murray, and Stewart and Genevieve Whiting; his cousin, Rhett Murray, and his beloved cats Mouser and Wheezy.
Iann is survived by his parents, Nan and Larry Murray. His daughter, Lennon Murray. His favorite sister and brother-in-law, McCall and Evan Adamson. His niece and nephews; Kassadi, Keaton, and Murray, and lastly, his feline companion, Vic, who will miss him dearly.
Our family would like to thank Dr. Steven Wallentine and his oncology team for the loving care they provided and to his Nurse Practitioner, Amber Barker, who advocated for Iann in his final days. We would also like to send a special thank you to his home health nurse, Sara Vaitohi. Sara’s expertise and calm healing presence carried us through our most difficult days. She protected his dignity and respected his choices and wishes until the very end. Iann felt comforted and safe in her care and for that we are forever grateful.
Memorial services will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, July 29, 2023, located at Wheeler Mortuary, 211 East 200 South in Springville, with a visitation from 10:00 to 11:00 before the services.
Military honors will be in the Springville Evergreen Cemetery.
Memorial donations can be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network at PANCAN.org under our PurpleStride team name “Iann’s Army”.
A tribute concert will be held at Angelus Theater in Spanish Fork on August 6, from 7pm - 10pm.
Condolences for the family may be expressed on this page.