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Edwards Van-Alma Funeral Home

4100 Alma Highway, Van Buren, AR

OBITUARY

Toney Ross McMurray

August 1, 1958March 11, 2020
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Toney Ross McMurray, 61, of Alma, was born on August 1, 1958. He departed this life on Wednesday, March 11, 2020 at his home. Toney was a 1976 graduate of Van Buren High School and a 1980 graduate of the University of Arkansas. He spent his four years of college serving as a student trainer for the Arkansas Razorbacks. After college, Toney began his teaching career at Alma High School. In his 35 plus years, he served as the Social Studies Department Chairman, the Regional Coordinator for National History Day, the high school tennis coach, the Director of the Airedale FCA, and the "Voice" of the Alma Airedales. He was also a Life Member of the Razorback Letterman's A Club. Toney was an active member of Concord Baptist Church, where he served as a deacon and Sunday School teacher. He was preceded in death by his father, Jimmy; and his father-in-law, Ed Hays.

Toney is survived by the love of his life, his wife of 29 years, Karla; three sons, whom he worshipped and adored, Stephen, Clayton and Jackson; his mother, Joyce who always brought a smile to his face; and his constant companions, his older brother Tom and his twin brother Teddy. He is also survived by his mother-in-law, Rosemary Hays; his sister-in-law, Paula and husband James Miller; his brothers-in-law, Wayne Hays and wife Kristi, William Hays, and John Randazzo; his nephews, Ryan Miller and wife Tiffanee, Bailey Hays, and Jared Hays; a niece, Alexis and husband Phillip Treat; and his special family friend, Tatiana MacPeek.

A celebration of life service will be 10:00 a.m. Saturday, March 14, 2020 at Concord Baptist Church, 6105 Alma Hwy in Van Buren. A private family interment will follow at Macedonia Cemetery near Uniontown, under the direction of Edwards Van-Alma Funeral Home in Van Buren.

Pallbearers will be Jerry Valentine, Ted Burkhart, Stan Flenor, Brian Kirkendoll, Scott Schlotthauer, Doug Cox, Nathan Mills, and Mike McSpadden.

The family will visit with friends from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday, March 13, 2020, at Edwards Van-Alma Funeral Home, 4100 Alma Highway, Van Buren, AR.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Toney McMurray Spirit of History Day Scholarship - Alma Education and Arts Association, P.O. Box 2139, Alma, AR 72921. Please designate on the memo line: Toney McMurray History Day Scholarship. You can also call 479-632-2129 during normal box office hours (weekdays from 10-12) and use a credit card to make a donation.

Services

  • Visitation Friday, March 13, 2020
  • Funeral Service Saturday, March 14, 2020

Memories

Toney Ross McMurray

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Matt Woosley

March 27, 2020

A good man with a big heart. That’s how I’ll always remember you. I grew up playing baseball with your son Stephen on a traveling team called “Alma Thunder”. I love and cherish those days and will always remember them. They were made possible because of good men & fathers like you, my dad, & many others that wanted us kids to play hard but to always have fun with sports. They were also made possible because fathers like you choose to be involved in your children’s lives & childhoods. You always led by example & I always looked up to you for the way that you did it. Always teaching us & showing us what was right & wrong, to learn from our mistakes, & to keep our chins held high weather we won or lost each game. Always teaching us good sportsmanship & to treat each other the way that we would want to be treated. Thank you for being a positive role model to me & for all that you taught me. Rest peacefully my friend.

Nancy Rhodes

March 14, 2020

Well Toney I just experienced your celebration of life service - well done my friend, well done. Where I really wanted to be today - and I know this is where you would have wanted me to be - is getting ready to watch my Jaelin tip the ball at the 5A state basketball championship but it was cancelled and thus that was not to be. I've been stressed this past week, but today at your service I was reminded of a few things - one being that God is masterful and is present and faithful in all things great and small.
I remember the ballgame several years ago when Jae was just a skinny little 10 year old and came with me to an Alma home game. You made her a little place at the end of the score table and laughed when I drew the line and said no more after she had eaten 3 chili cheese hotdogs. You made her feel so special that night. Through the years as she grew to nearly 6 ft and displayed some real skills as a basketball player you gave her a hard time about wearing the blue and gray of a bulldog but you cheered for her and she knew it ❤️.
I miss you my friend - I could sure use you tossing me a lifesaver mint about right now. I will always have a mint or two in my desk drawer in honor of you. See you someday in Heaven - I’ll expect you to ‘announce’ my arrival 😊

Rika Takenaka

March 13, 2020

Mr. McMurray, I am deeply shocked to know that you are not in this world any more. I truly regret I did not keep in touch with you after I left Alma 30 years ago. You were my favorite teacher and I still laugh about how you struggled to pronounce my surname. Really miss you. I will never forget about you, Mr. McMurray, and I will pray for your family. Rest in peace.

Jimmy Garrett

March 13, 2020

Loved TMac and the entire family. Such an awesome person that we lost way too soon. Teddy and Tom, carry on and know that we all have another guardian Angel, which we all know I sincerely need! Love the entire family and send my heartfelt condolences and so wish I could be there to shed some tears of sadness and joy knowing he is in paradise.

Bill Mitchell

March 13, 2020

A good man from a good family has gone on to join his Heavenly Family. May God bless and comfort the family he left on earth.

Autumn Limbocker

March 13, 2020

McMurray’s APUSH class was one of the first I ever took. To say I was in over my head that year is an understatement, but McMurray made it worth it to show up to class because he didn’t give up on his students. I’m grateful for everything I learned in his class. I will put back into the world the passion and drive he brought to class and taught to his students every day.

Doug Cox

March 13, 2020

Toney is one of the best friends I have ever known. We became good friends through coaching tennis over the years. We would schedule each other in tennis every year whether we were in the same conference or not. We referred to each other as “brothers of a different mother”. He touched the lives of so many people and he treated everyone he met like he had known them forever. Everyone that knew him has been blessed. It goes without saying he was a special husband and dad. Heaven has gained a great one. I will always have such fond memories of our friendship and times together.

Tammy McPeak-McCause

March 12, 2020

Mr. McMurray was and will always be my favorite. He made me love history class so much, my degree is in History/PolSci. He truly cared about all of his students and we were all drawn to him for that. I’ve never heard one person said anything bad about him as a teacher or a human being. The Voice will be missed and no one will be able to fulfill those shoes. Not saying they won’t be great at calling all Airedale games, but there’s nothing like the original. Praying for his family and I hope they all know how special is to the entire community. We love you, TMac. See you when I get there. Until then, rest easy good and faithful servant. ♥️

Corey Hamilton

March 12, 2020

Mr. McMurray is one of the reasons why I wanted to teach history. I always enjoyed my history classes but the way he taught it and the energy he always brought was infectious. There are 3 people I consider to be the influences in my life who made me want to teach/coach. Toney is one of those 3 and I’ll be forever grateful that I knew him. Rest In Peace my friend until we meet again.

Kathy Poague davies

March 12, 2020

I grew up with teddy and toney they were like a block from me on Dechard street .The mcmurrays are a wonderful family . Nothing but great memories playing ball or just knowing twins 😍My heart breaks for his family and Teddy and Joyce 🙏🏼🙏🏼♥️♥️

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