By Associated Press - Tuesday, March 17, 2015

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) - Hundreds of people gathered in Casper on Tuesday for a memorial service for Wyoming businessman and philanthropist Mick McMurry.

Speakers remembered McMurry, 69, as a fun-loving, good-natured entrepreneur who donated millions of dollars to improve his home state, according to the Casper Star-Tribune (https://bit.ly/1BO0Gei ).

Among those who spoke at the Casper Events Center were Gov. Matt Mead, University of Wyoming Foundation President Ben Blalock and John Martin, McMurry’s business partner.

McMurry and Martin pioneered the development of natural gas in western Wyoming. Two of their projects, Jonah Field and the Pinedale Anticline, became among the largest in North America.

The success made McMurry a fortune, and after selling the field, he and his wife, Susie, used the profits to create the McMurry Foundation. In its first 15 years, the foundation awarded more than $49 million, including grants to the Wyoming Technology Business Center, Boys and Girls Club of Central Wyoming, the University of Wyoming’s College of Education, and Wyoming athletic facilities.



He also contributed to Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium, a tribute to the oil fields that generated much of the family wealth.

“There is no building big enough in Wyoming, or elsewhere, to hold all the lives Mick touched and made better,” Mead told mourners at the service.

Mead then shared stories of fast cars and jokes swapped in his years knowing McMurry.

“Today, we remember Mick. But we will remember him for many, many years to come,” the governor said. “Because yesterday, today and for endless tomorrows, we will continue to benefit from all Mick has done.”

McMurry died at his home March 10 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. His family said he had struggled with depression after undergoing back surgery in February.

He graduated from the University of Wyoming and served in the Vietnam War before returning home to work for a construction company owned by his father, W.M. “Neil” McMurry.

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Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, https://www.trib.com

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