In another case of the tree falling in the forest, the New York Times has failed to report on the heroics of Long Island native Michael Murphy. Lt. Murphy will be recognized posthumously with a Medal of Honor for his unbelievable heroics in Afghanistan. The New York Post’s Bill Sanderson and Selim Algar award the Times a medal of dis-honor and the Post runs a companion editorial.
Many readers have written to direct our attention to Newsday’s coverage of this humbling, inspirational story. “Slain Patchogue SEAL receives highest honor” includes a news video with comments from Lt. Murphy’s parents. Ellis Henican’s “Michael Murphy put his heart into his fight” also quotes Lt. Murphy’s father:
“Michael believed in what he was doing over there,” his father, Dan Murphy, was telling me yesterday after the news came from Washington about the medal. “It wasn’t political at all. It was personal to him. He was there fighting the people who’d attacked the city he loved.”
“Michael and his team were where they wanted to be,” his father said. “He felt what he was doing was important.”
Henican quotes Murphy regarding the insignia Lt. Murphy wore on his uniform”
“He carried it on his uniform, the emblem of the New York City Fire Department. Engine 53, Ladder Company 43. El Barrio’s Bravest. The firefighters have their own memorial to him. You can look it up on their Web site. There is a huge plaque of Michael in uniform in the firehouse. The SEALs presented it to them. The firefighters touch it every day for good luck before they go out on a call.
“It’s all very personal.”
As an Officer, Murph chose to use Engine 53 and Ladder 43 as a symbol for his teammates. Shortly after being deployed, Mike requested enough company patches to distribute to his fellow SEAL members. We were informed that Mike wore our patch with pride on every mission, on every deployment.
I believe the plaque below is the one to which Dan Murphy refers.