A veterinary hospital manager whose friends describe her as “always in a hurry,” Kim Murray values the time when she can just sit on her front porch swing, enjoy listening to the birds and read her magazines
Q: You and your husband’s eyes met, so to speak, over a serving of barbecue. Tell us a little about that.
A: Don Murray (of Don Murray’s Barbecue, formerly on Capital Boulevard in Raleigh) was my father-in-law. My uncles worked for Don Murray in the 1970s and I would come and work at the restaurant too every Saturday. And in the summertime, I would work there six days a week. I met my husband Steve there and we got married when we were young. I got married at 18 and we are still together. We have been married for 33 years. It’s funny – when I tell people I have been married for 33 years, they ask me ‘To the same person?’ (laughing). When we got married, we moved to Ashley Hills in Knightdale. We were the sixth house built in that subdivision. About 11 years ago, we built our dream house on Taylor Road, outside Wendell.
Q: But you don’t work in barbecue anymore.
A: For the past eight years, I have worked at Neuse River Veterinary Hospital in Wendell. I am the manager for the small animal hospital. There are two parts to the hospital – small animal and the equine side. Dr. Connie Jones bought out the small animal practice from the Myers about three and a half years ago. We are still in the same building together. I also work part-time at WakeMed. I have always seemed to have two jobs (laughing).
Q: Is working with animals something you always wanted to do?
A: I wanted to be a nurse. I began taking nursing classes at Wake Tech soon after I got married but we also started our family right away. My husband was working 80 hours a week. I came home one night from classes and both of my girls were crying and it was just something I decided to put on hold for a while. I decided that being a mama was going to come first. I sort of regret never getting my nursing degree but you know, life happened. I am a certified technician. I have worked off and on at WakeMed for 21 years.
Q: Are you from the eastern Wake area?
A: I grew up in Wilson County, in a little town called Black Creek. Both of my grandparents worked in tobacco so when I was growing up, I worked in tobacco too. Everyone used to kid me that after I got married and moved, I was getting far away from the tobacco fields. At the time, I probably was ready to get away but looking back, I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Hard work on the farm like that is good for you.
Q: It sounds like you stay so busy, you don’t have time for much of anything else but do you have any hobbies?
A: I love spending time with my family (Tara, 32, Lyndsay, 30 and Tyler, 24) and my three grandchildren. I love going to the beach. I like to decorate. I love to go shopping. I have a shoe fetish. I have two weaknesses: shoes and chocolate. And I love to have my Pepsi in the morning but I gave up Pepsi for Lent. It has not been as bad as I thought. I need to lose weight anyway. I enjoy the mall. Going to the spa. And I love cooking big meals for my family. Growing up, I didn’t do a lot of cooking so after I got married, I was always calling my grandma and I literally learned how to cook over the telephone. I would start something and she would talk me through it.
Q: What would the people who know you be surprised to learn?
A: Well, I don’t listen to country music now but years ago, I would travel to see Kenny Rogers in concert if he was in a 100-mile radius. I would make my husband get the tickets and off we would go. I wouldn’t go see him now in concert. And I think they would be surprised if they could see me at home, sitting in my swing, by myself, just looking at my magazines. They see me as always in a hurry but I do enjoy the time to myself. I do enjoy the quiet.