Oklahoma Railway Museum co-founder dies from stroke at age 70, museum lives on

Jim Murray Jr. had a vision for a train museum in Oklahoma City. The Oklahoma Railway Museum opened in 2002. Murray died May 3, and a memorial is Tuesday at the museum.
by Robert Medley Published: May 13, 2013

Jim Murray Jr. had a vision for vacant lots in northeast Oklahoma City in what was becoming known as the “Adventure District” near the zoo in the late 90s.

In 1997 Murray and others started working toward obtaining land and railroad track in northeast Oklahoma City at 3400 NE Grand Blvd. They opened the Oklahoma Railway Museum in 2002.

Murray, 70, still had plans for expansion of the museum grounds, his daughter Anne Murray said. But Jim Murray suffered a stroke May 3 and died May 6.

Inside a garage where Murray was working on a train only a day before his stroke, a garage big enough to work on a train car, his friends, families and supporters plan to gather at his funeral Tuesday.

By 2003, Murray and others managed to move an old railroad depot from Oakwood to the grounds near NE 36 and Lincoln Boulevard. Soon there were old railroad cars, then restored railroad cars and track to run a train.

A decade later, The Oklahoma Railway Museum, has become an active place for families and children.

The museum is known for hosting train rides from “Thomas The Train,” once a year in the fall on tracks between NE 50 and NE 10, a yearly Halloween train ride and a Christmas train ride.

by Robert Medley
Breaking News Reporter
Robert Medley has been a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1989, covering various news beats in the Oklahoma City metro area and in the Norman news bureau. He has been part of the breaking news team since 2008. A 1987 University of Oklahoma...
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Make a donation

Jim Murray Jr.'s family asks that instead of flowers, people may make a donation to Oklahoma Railway Museum, 3400 NE Grand Boulevard, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73111.

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