Lynda Susan Murphy Knott, a renowned public relations professional and a cherished figure in her community, passed away on Nov. 20 after a valiant battle with colon cancer. She was 69.

Born on Nov. 7, 1954, to Ronald and Beverly Murphy in Arlington Heights, Ill., and raised in Sycamore, Ill., Lynda attended Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, where she earned her degree in journalism and was an effervescent cheerleader for the Drake Bulldogs football team. Lynda's journey was marked by her magnetic spirit and exceptional resoluteness, and took her from Arlington Heights, to Sycamore, through Des Moines, to New York City, to her true home in Chicago, then on to lives in Chesterton, Ind., and Sydney, Australia, back and up to Winnetka, Ill., and finally back to Chicago where she lived the majority of her life and where she most thrived.

Throughout her 20s, Lynda learned the ropes of her industry and the machinery of the professional world. In 1984, at the age of 30 in Chicago, she founded Murphy Knott Public Relations, which she lead for nearly four decades until her death, helping to craft the corporate messaging of major local, national, and international brands like Miller Brewing Company, IBM, Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria, Vienna Beef, Ferrara Candy Company, Stanley Black & Decker, Securitas, Konami, The Merchandise Mart, The Chicago Marathon, and The Winter Olympics, among many others.

Her determination to service her clients throughout her battle with cancer spoke volumes of her dedication and prowess in the field, and her pride in her identity as an exemplary and tireless business woman of utmost professionalism.

Lynda's impact went beyond her dedication to her career. In 1982, she was married to Andy Knott, her husband of over 20 years. Together with Andy, Lynda had her two children — her two greatest loves — Jack and Shelby.

As a mother, mentor, and best friend to her son, who worked for her at Murphy Knott for nearly a decade, she shared a bond of love, wisdom, joy, and constant analytical interpretation of the daily news cycle. Her son's professional and personal growth, nurtured by her mentorship, stands as a testament to her influential role as a mother.  

A great beauty, Lynda was likewise a role model and best friend to her daughter, whom she loved and adored beyond words; upon whom she imparted cultured taste, effortless grace, and unyielding compassion; and for whom her devotion as a mother was without end.  

Respecting her wishes for privacy, Lynda's battle with cancer was known only to a few. This discretion, a reflection of her strength and independence, was honored by her family throughout her journey.

In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to Designs for Dignity, a Chicago-based non-profit for which Lynda was a board member for over a decade.   

Lynda leaves behind a legacy of resilience, love, and professional excellence. Her memory will continue to inspire and resonate with all who knew her, especially her children, siblings, and extended family. Her life, lived with purpose and grace, will remain a beacon of inspiration and beauty.

She is survived by her children, John Walters Knott and Shelby McCord Knott of Chicago; her mother Beverly Jahr Murphy of Sycamore, Ill.; her siblings Jeanne Murphy Malnati of Kenilworth, Ill.; Kathleen Murphy Deveny of Glencoe, Ill., and Robert Daniel Murphy of Indianapolis, Ind.; her brothers-in-law Marc A. Malnati and Christopher A. Deveny, and her adored nieces Kelsey Malnati Howell of Kenilworth, Melissa Malnati Molitor (and Thomas) of Wilmette, Ill., Kamryn Deveny of Glencoe, Ill., and Kelley Deveny of Boulder, Colo.; nephews William Malnati (and Alissa) of New York City, Colin Deveny of Chicago, Mackinnon Murphy, Braden Murphy, and Daxton Murphy of Indianapolis; grand-nieces Lucy Howell, Clara Howell, and Addison Molitor; and grand-nephews Max Howell, Miles Molitor, and Remy Malnati.