Obituary of Edward H. Murphy
In her poem, “The Dash”, Linda Ellis writes of how a person’s tombstone lists the beginning and the end of one’s life, but the most important part is the dash between the two. For the dash represents the time spent alive on earth, and what a dash Edward H. Murphy had.
The beginning of his dash was January 5, 1938, when he was born to Margaret (nee O’Brien) and James F. Murphy, Jr. Edward or “Ed” or “Eddie” as he was known, was the youngest and last survivor of four siblings. He joined James III (Helen Marie), Jack, and Rosemarie (Bill Codus) where they grew up in Rockville Centre, parishioners of St. Agnes. Both of which would be his homes for life.
A dash usually includes one’s education. Ed attended St. Agnes Elementary School, Xavier High School, Georgetown University and LeMoyne College.
How one makes their livelihood is also included within one’s dash. Eddie started his career in his family’s business, then in 1980 became the proprietor of the Video Station, one of the first video stores on the east coast, finally embarking on his final career as a financial consultant with Kidder Peabody, Paine Webber, Prudential and finally Raymond James.
But the true essence of Ed’s dash was his family and his faith. On August 17, 1963, Ed married the love of his life, Joan Marie (nee Gallagher). Over the next sixty years, Eddie and Joanie would together create their greatest legacy – their family. Ed was the very proud father of Edward Jr, Patrick (Vivian), John (Georgina), Suzanne (the late Robert Sullivan), James (Emily) and Christopher (Eileen) and an extremely proud grandfather to Matthew Yuen (Olivia), Robert Jr, Caitlin and Patrick Sullivan, James Jr, Colleen, Arthur, Ryan, Edward, Sorin and Brendan Murphy. He was also blessed to be the uncle of legions of nieces and nephews.
Those who were fortunate enough to be a part of Eddie’s dash knew he was an extremely intelligent man, had deep faith, was generous, loved history and politics and was a true patriot. He served in the army reserve and was an advance man for President Nixon’s 1968 campaign – he even flew on Air Force One and was the person who answered the phone when Humphrey conceded in 1968,
He had an incredible sense of humor and as much as he could dish it out, he could take being the brunt of a joke which was usually made by one of his children or their spouses. He loved spending time with his friends, especially his “Merry Men” at Hempstead Golf Club in NY and Heritage Palms in Ft. Myers FL where he would often lead them in singing college fight songs. He loved golf, so much so that four months after suffering a stroke, he was back on the course, winning a tournament with his sons. He passed on that passion to his children and his grandchildren. He loved being with his children and his children’s friends. He truly was a legend among them – everyone has a favorite “Mr. Murph” story.
He valued education, especially Catholic education, and he and Joanie sacrificed to send their children through Catholic elementary and high schools and Catholic colleges. In later years he loved to proudly gripe about going broke for having to shell out $20 each time one of his grandchildren made the honor roll.
He was a fixture at 5pm Saturday Mass and the Steven McDonald Men’s prayer group. He taught his children the importance of giving back, being active on the St. Agnes Parish Party Committee, even serving as its chair. He was also active in The Friends of Mercy.
He was a son, brother, cousin, friend, uncle, Godfather, and most important to him: a husband, father and grandfather. He wore many names during his dash: Eddie, Dad, Pepa, Pops, Lips, Tender, Stoney, Swervey, Thermos and his self-professed “Love Slave” to Joanie.
After 85 years, on June 29, 2023, Eddie finished his dash. He completed it with great faith, great determination, great love, great humor, and as Frank Sinatra sang, he did it his way. The world is now a little less bright and there’s a little less laughter but it is definitely a better place because of Ed Murphy’s dash.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Sarcoma Foundation of America. https://www.curesarcoma.org/donate-today/
Or donations can be mailed to Sarcoma Foundation of America PO Box 98160 Washington DC 200090