Murph: The Protector (2013) Movie Script

I got a phone call one day
from the principal.
And he said, "Mrs. Murphy,
I have to call you on this," he goes,
"but Mike's not really in trouble.
I have to tell you because
we gotta report these things."
He says,
"Mike was in a fight."
I know there was a kid in school
at one point when he was younger
that they were bullying,
and he wouldn't put up with it.
Some of these kids
were bullying a child
who was in...
who had learning disabilities.
So they were trying
to stuff him in a locker,
you know, thinking it was funny.
And Mike came along and,
you know, told them, "Let him go."
A lot of people say things
about people that passed away
and they might
rightfully be glorified,
but anything that has ever been said
about Mike is spot-on true.
The little kid
was really scared.
He was like...
you know, he thanked Mike.
He was Michael the protector.
And that's what he was doing.
When we were lifeguards, we would have
so-called "lifeguard parties."
And, you know, every now and then
someone would get out of control.
And if there was a mismatch
in a fight with someone,
Mike would make sure
that it "evened out," let's say.
And he would, you know,
stand to that guy's guard.
He was always
very protective of people.
He reflected that in his whole life.
It was always
"please" and "thank you"
and the protector image
that he projected.
I said that, you know,
"You treat people
the way you want to be treated."
Which was,
"It's not about me, it's about you."
And he really was a protector.
This one person
made such an impact
on everything, you know.
But he was the protector.
Well, we moved to Patchogue
when Mike was about two and half.
And, you know, he was little.
And we had a house built.
And his room
was up on the second floor.
And for a little man, I mean,
he couldn't wait
to get his own room.
He went up into that room,
into his first captain's bed,
'cause he wasn't gonna get
the crib, you know,
and he went to bed,
said good night, and that was it.
Never bothered for water or...
he was that kind of a kid. He was
very mature even for a little guy.
Mike wasn't afraid of anything.
He would just go and do it.
And once he got his mind set to it,
he was doing it
and nobody was stopping him.
We took him
into my neighbor's pool.
We didn't have a pool back then.
And he was like... loved the water.
He just loved it.
And one day
he just walked over there
and thought he could go in it
and dove in.
And I got in the water,
picked him up.
And, you know, I see this little face
looking at me through the water.
And I picked him up and I put
the towel around him and I said,
"Don't do that. You can't go in there
unless an adult goes in with you."
And as I turned to put the towel,
he dove in again.
So he just was like
a little water bug.
Mike is my cousin.
We grew up together.
He lived five minutes
from my house.
We went to middle school together.
We went to high school together.
And he always had kids to play with.
Even though he was an only child,
he always had, you know,
cousins and friends to play with.
So my back yard was like
the back yard for all the kids.
We were just playing roller hockey
and stuff in his driveway.
And even then
he might not have been even
the best skater at that time,
but he was diving, blocking shots,
poke-checking, in your way.
He was the guy that got
the skinned knee and kept going.
He had a group of friends.
I wouldn't say
that Mike was the guy
that was jumping
from friends to friends.
He had this core group of guys
that were his buddies,
guys that remained his friends
for the rest of his life.
When we were kids,
we were playing football
across the street
from his mother's house.
I launched a pass to him
and it was so far to the right.
He actually dove and laid out
like it was an ESPN commercial.
He disappeared into the hedges.
And I remember thinking to myself,
"My God, what happened to Mike?"
He came out.
He was full of blood, mud,
his shirt ripped,
a hole in his pants.
Walked out, he went, "Touchdown!"
and dropped the ball and walked away.
Mike was an only child
for a long time.
And 10 years later I had John.
And he never said he wanted
a brother or a sister,
but I think he really wanted
a brother.
And I was in the hospital
and I had John.
And that afternoon
Mike comes walking in the hospital,
and it was really cute... he bounces up
on the side of the bed and he says,
"Mom, you made me
the happiest kid. I have a brother."
Brought tears to my eyes.
I remember going
to the games a lot.
And I remember
at the football games,
of course football
being in the fall and the winter,
sitting on the bench,
watching Michael play
and also at the same time
kind of feeling cold,
like, "How much longer do I have
to be here? I'd rather be home,"
you know,
play with toys or something
and, you know,
in the nice, warm weather.
But, I mean, still watching him play.
It was nice to watch him play.
Michael was such a good kid
that he would go with his father
on the slightest errands.
Dan would say, "Let's go
across the street to 7-Eleven,"
and Michael would say, "Okay, Pop."
And off they would go to 7-Eleven.
As a real young boy,
he was always in a good mood,
always happy. And he was...
he was up for everything.
His dogs Blackie and Charlie...
he would tell you
what was going on with them.
And he'd always be devoted to them,
making sure they had water
and letting them out,
making sure they were okay.
He was a great swimmer.
And they had a pool in the back yard.
And he would do silly dives,
whether it was cannonballs or...
Dan used to do
something called "pencil."
And Mike would do that
because he was...
he loved swimming.
He loved the water.
Michael Murphy.
Come on, Michael,
you're the youngest one there.
Where is he?
It was chaotic and fun.
Typical Michael...
when the girls moved in,
they were... I mean, they were...
I think Cathy was nine,
Kelly was 11 and Colleen was 12.
My dad passed away
when I was younger.
And Aunt Maureen had taken me
and my sisters
and gave us, you know,
a family and a place to live.
Their father had died of cancer.
Their mother had basically
abandoned them.
And their grandmother
literally wanted
to move them along.
Michael and I laughed
because she was so intent
on getting them out of her house
that she delivered them to us
in the middle of a snowstorm.
Mike gave up his room
and, you know, we became
like brothers and sisters.
"Mom, Dad, the girls
have to stay somewhere.
I'll move out of the big room
so they can go in that room."
And always helped me,
you know, study.
If I didn't know something,
he would help me, teach me.
He actually taught me to drive.
Tell me more about that.
Yeah, my first car was his first car.
And he'd take me to a parking lot
of an abandoned supermarket
or empty supermarket,
and he'd teach me
to go in circles
and then venture out
onto the roads.
Yes! Yes!
Sports was his thing.
He loved it.
He played soccer.
He wasn't wild about soccer,
but he loved baseball.
He loved football and hockey, yeah.
Anything kind of dangerous
he liked.
And so he made the football team.
And Mike in high school
was not the Mike you see
in a SEAL uniform.
Mike was kind of a wiry guy.
He was fierce.
The hardest hitter.
Very small. He was a small guy,
you know.
He didn't weigh all that much.
But he played safety.
And he would just... he would
knock the crap out of people.
And he was fast too.
He was really fast.
He lost his spot to, actually,
Kristin's boyfriend at the time.
And he actually worked with him
to make him a better football player.
That's who he was, you know.
He knew this guy was taking his spot,
but he was gonna help him
get better.
He stepped aside to let
this freshman come up, and willingly,
and mentored him
that entire season, because he knew
that he would be a better fit
for the team in how he played.
After the last game,
which they lost,
the coach came out
and said to the team,
"You know what?
You guys gave up.
Every one of you,
leave your uniforms outside the door.
I don't even want to see you.
Except for Michael Murphy.
You can come in
and you can hand your uniform in,
'cause you're the only guy
that continued
to give 100% out on that field
all day long."
So this is Lake Ronkonkoma.
This is where we worked.
The boys would swim out
across the lake.
They would do it for their workouts.
They would run all the way around.
So the lifeguard stand
was right there
where that white stick is.
In my first year of lifeguard,
he was the beach attendant.
And I didn't know any...
I was at Holtsville Pool.
I didn't know anybody.
You know, I got there.
They walked me in.
They sat me on a bench.
And I hear, "Keenan!"
I'm like, "What? Where is this...?"
He was like, "Yo, it's Murph."
I was like, "Hey, man, what's going on?"
He kind of liked
the gig a little bit,
how everybody was lifeguards.
And he just from there, I guess,
what he thought was he just wanted
to become a lifeguard.
And he worked out and he trained
and the next year
he joined the lifeguarding staff.
And that was my first year.
And we all just became friends
from that point forward.
Jessica was, for Mike...
- we started work here.
- She was quiet.
There was a little quiet girl
working at the beach
who sat down under the shack
reading a book.
Mike starts talking to Jess.
And he's like,
"You're the beach attendant.
You're supposed to clean the bathrooms
and put up the flag."
He's like, "We can't be
having a girl do that."
So then, two minutes, he's got all of us
running down the beach,
the guys cleaning the beach,
dumping the garbages.
- The goose poop.
- Yeah, pick up goose crap.
We're like, "Where did she go?
She's gone."
Like, "We just did this girl's job,
and she's gone."
She comes back.
She's got TCBY.
'Cause I went to my second job.
We didn't know, 'cause we didn't
take the time to find out,
- Jessica worked for TCBY.
- At night.
- At night.
- And that day and many days after
the whole beach won out.
So it was a spoiled crew,
thanks to Mike, you know,
finding that little girl
sitting there reading a book.
- Flower child.
- Yeah, a hippie flower child.
He called her a "tree hugger."
He always wanted to have fun.
And he always wanted
to make people laugh.
And that was his goal,
I felt like.
That's always
what he wanted to do.
I had this minivan that...
it was my dad's family car.
It was our...
we had a GMC Safari
that he passed down to me.
And Mike at one point wanted
to reenact "The A-Team" scenes.
And we would slide the door open
and glide down the road
and he tried to dive in it
while it was moving.
Corey Beach.
And he was so tired.
We had, like, a night
of drinking night before.
- And... can I say that stuff?
- Yeah.
That's all right?
So we had a night of drinking before,
and he was passed out tired.
Michael liked to party too.
So, you know,
he was not one
to miss out on a party.
So I actually went up on a gazebo,
climbed up on a gazebo,
threw a football at him.
And he was like... he was so pissed.
He wasn't pissed
pissed, but he...
and he went looking for me.
I was on top of the gazebo.
And he actually found me
and started throwing rocks at me.
And I couldn't get down
unless he started... you know,
'cause he was pelting me with rocks.
So my parents... they're both
different in their ways of parenting,
but very much the same.
They were always focused
on my well-being.
So whether or not that was getting me
involved in sports to keep active
or STEP program on Saturdays
to keep my interest
in the sciences fostered.
While other kids were going out
and playing video games
and playing basketball, they always
wanted me to be involved in something,
to have my own identity.
My husband and I have very different
parenting styles.
And as a family, you need that.
You need to have that balance.
I was the disciplinarian.
A lot of it was left up to me,
what I wanted to participate in,
whether it was jujitsu
or Boy Scouts.
But some of it
was some gentle nudging
and letting me know
that I had to do something.
So I still appreciate that.
Now I appreciate that.
As a 13-year-old kid,
knowing that I have to get up
at 8:00 on a Saturday,
that's another story.
I don't care
what you choose to do.
It's your choosing.
We are here as parents
to make sure
that you accomplish that,
to support you on that.
But the only bargaining chip
that we have
is that...
no question about it,
that you have to be
a college graduate.
The first time I ever saw Murph
was day number one
at Penn State.
It was 1994.
And here, a bunch of young kids,
a mixture of being scared
and as excited as hell to be on your own
and out in a big school
like Penn State.
And I'm moving my stuff
into my dorm room
and I notice this guy
right across the hall.
He seemed like a good guy.
We started speaking.
And, I guess,
30 seconds into the conversation
he mentioned he was
from Patchogue, New York.
And I said,
"You're not gonna believe this.
I'm from a little town
called East Moriches,
you know,
a good 15 minutes away."
And, you know,
the connection was instant.
We formed a bond
that first day that...
I mean, I thank God
that it happened.
He's 10 years older
than his brother John.
So when he went into college
at 18 or 19,
John was eight or nine.
And he used to bring John
up to school with him
for about a week at a time.
And I would say to him,
"Why would you have
an eight-year-old with you?"
And he'd say,
"Because he's a chick magnet."
A lot of the times he was referred to
as Murph and that was...
he even tried to get that to stick
with us as his nickname.
Mike was very superstitious.
It was incredible.
Whenever it came to sport...
not so much in life, but in athletics.
And he would wear the same shirt
to play football in
without washing it.
That was him.
That's what he would do.
And he would say, "Well, if someone's
gonna have to tackle me,
they're gonna have to
get through the stink."
And so from that day forward,
he was known as Stinky
among our tight group of friends.
He really did love Penn State.
He had really good friends.
He had his home friends.
And everybody always
kept up with each other.
What more could you ask for?
He was happy.
I wasn't quite sure what his path was
gonna be when he went to Penn State,
but it was something
that was in his heart
and something
that he wanted to pursue.
And, you know,
I was very proud of him.
The kid was smarter
and more well-read
than anyone would ever know,
because it's not something
that he talked about or let on.
He was a prolific reader,
you know.
He read everything
that he could get his hands on.
But on his list of reading material
he said,
"Look, if you want to get me
something for Christmas,
there's this great book
I'd like called
"The Bear On the Other Side
of the Mountain,"
or "The Bear Over the Mountain."
We didn't put any stock...
it kind of... whew... over our heads.
Afterwards we find out,
"The Bear Over the Mountain"
was a story about the Russian
invasion into Afghanistan.
And it was almost like a clue
that we didn't pick up.
I thought he was gonna go
to law school, just because.
As far as we knew,
he was always gonna go to law school.
He had all these accolades,
the grades.
His dad's a lawyer.
That's what his dad wanted him to do.
And Mike, he had the grades.
To my knowledge, got into
U Penn Law School, Tennessee Law.
He didn't really,
like, talk about it much.
He started taking it to the next level.
He started training,
just because
he wanted to be in top shape
before he did it.
So clearly he was getting
prepared for something.
The SEALs... this is crazy,
you know.
It's like the elite of the elite.
And I didn't really, truly believe
that he was gonna do it.
Michael turns to me
and says, "Dad,"
he said, "you know,
we've been talking
about legal education and stuff,
but I've been looking
at the special operations branch,
specifically the Navy SEALs."
All of a sudden, he just said,
"I want to do this."
And I have to tell you,
I tried to talk him out of it and said,
"But you're really good with people.
You could be a good teacher."
And I looked at him
and I told him,
I said I'd disown him
if he joined the military.
And it was something like,
"Oh, you know,
it's really hard to get into,"
and all this.
And don't say that to Mike,
because when you say he can't do
something, he will just go for it.
Of course you don't wish that
for your eldest son...
to be put in harm's way.
SEALs are about team.
They always are. They're not about
individual accomplishment.
They're not about who...
who can score the most points
in a basketball game.
They're usually about the guy
that made the best passes
in a basketball game,
not the guy that dunked it.
It must have been
something he read about
and he liked the idea
of the work that they did
and he got it in his head.
And then it was one of those...
again, Michael becomes focused
and determined... "Oh, this is my path."
The first time I ever met Michael
was by phone
when he called me up
and asked me
if I would talk to him
about becoming a Navy SEAL.
I told Michael to come by on...
I believe it was a Saturday...
and I'd be happy
to talk to him about it.
When he met Mike, he said
there's certain guys
you tell right off the bat.
And he said,
"I was out there chopping wood
and Mike comes around the corner
and introduces himself
and says,
'Hi. I'm Mike Murphy."'
I was splitting wood
and said, "Who are you?"
And he said that,
"I'm Michael Murphy."
And I said, "Well, good for you.
I understand you'd like
to talk about SEAL Team."
And he looked at me
and said, "No, sir,
I want to be a SEAL."
He says, "I'm interested
in becoming a Navy SEAL."
And with that,
he's chopping wood,
he didn't even say anything
to Mike.
Mike took off his jacket,
rolled up his sleeves
and started helping him
chop the wood without even asking.
We talked about SEAL for some period of time
and my experiences in it
and what I thought it would take
for him to achieve that.
And he convinced me
that he absolutely should have
the opportunity to try,
which was...
it's not often that that happens
over a period of a singular...
single conversation.
If he hadn't come out
and helped split the wood,
our conversation
would have been very brief
after we got done.
But he didn't know that.
Two, three,
You know, Mike would go upstate
to do fitness tests to qualify.
And every day at the beach
was a chance to train.
So he'd be doing sit-ups,
running, swimming,
whether it would be leave here
and go to the pool
to drown-proof himself
or to do sidestroke
or do sit-ups till he yakked
and then continued some more.
Oh, he literally
would do sit-ups till he puked.
He'd come up,
turn to his side, puke
and get mad at himself.
I was like, "What's wrong with you?"
- Then continue doing sit-ups.
- And then keep going, yeah.
And then he said something to me
which made me just say,
"You know what, Mike?
Go for it."
He said, "Mom, would you like me
to sit at a desk
and not be happy
for the next 30 years
or do you really...
would you be happy,
you know, that I'm doing
something that I really want?"
What can you say?
You just want what your kids...
if they're happy,
you're fine with it.
Even though it's dangerous work,
he was happy with it.
He loved it.
He'd do it all over again.
I know him.
He would do it all over again.
I went to Naval
Academy, graduated in 1997,
went right to flight school
from there.
I was down in Florida, San Diego,
and Virginia, flying the H-46.
I got to my squadron
right before September 11th,
about a year before.
So I did a full deployment
and then September 11th
and everybody was going out to sea
and deploying
and going to the Middle East
and that part of the world.
And I went two more times
during my tour, so I was going a lot.
So I was in Persian Gulf a whole lot
during that time.
After my flying tour,
I went to be stationed
at Kings Point
Merchant Marine Academy,
which is there in Kings Point,
New York, on Long Island.
So one of our extra duties
is to be available
to be casualty officers
for any families in the local area.
Mike was from Long Island,
then went to Penn State University
and graduated there,
right after that went to OCS.
We go down to see him
graduate from Pensacola.
And I don't see him.
You know, we get down there,
we get down there late,
and they're marching onto the field.
Dan and I were catching a plane
to get down there,
but there was a big windstorm, so
Newark Airport, you know, closed down.
Dan and I had to take a car.
So Maureen, John and I,
we drive there
and they held us up
because they were...
the graduating class
was marching down the road.
There was about 400 of them
in, you know, uniform.
And Danny looks over at me.
And we're seeing them
coming at us.
And Dan goes,
"You're never gonna see him in this.
Everybody's all dressed alike.
It's like a sea of blue."
I go and I turn to Maureen
and I say,
"Maureen," I said, "there is no way
we're gonna be...
I mean, how are we supposed
to find Michael?"
And as I turned, I said,
"There he is right there."
And I spotted him.
And Maureen goes, she said,
"There he is."
And Danny goes,
"How did you do that?"
I said,
"I know that walk anywhere."
And I said,
"How can you tell?"
And she said,
"I'd know that walk anywhere.
It looks...
he walks just like you."
Actually, when I heard him
barking all these orders out,
I was like, "That's Mike?"
He sounded like...
this really deep voice and everything.
I couldn't believe it was him.
He was very authoritative.
But she spotted him right away,
which was amazing.
They get a certain amount
of coins.
And they give it to the first person
that salutes them.
And you're supposed to give it to
the people that influenced you the most.
And he gave one to his dad,
one to me and his brother.
I have that coin.
I will never let that go.
And I thought that...
it was a beautiful thing.
Crawl. Crawl.
- Hold up boat.
- Up boat.
- Down boat.
- Down boat.
- Up boat.
- Up boat.
- Down boat.
- Down boat.
- Hold up boat.
- Up boat.
- Down boat.
- Down...
When he goes to BUD/S,
I was concerned
because I knew how demanding
the program was.
I also knew how people fail.
You know, you read about
less than 15%, 20% graduate.
And I know Michael had a class
of about 200.
And he was relaying to me
how one of the first initiations was,
"Look to the guy to the left
of you
and look to the guy
to the right of you.
They won't make it
through the program."
That's how difficult it is.
Oftentimes the best athlete
in the class doesn't make it.
I know in my class,
the best athlete in our class quit.
It's very difficult
to look at somebody and say
that he is a SEAL
or he's going to be a SEAL.
I mean, today
they're 6'6", 260 pounds,
down to 5' 5", 130 pounds.
Because it's all in your heart
and it's all in your head.
It's really not about
your physical abilities.
They'll give you
the physical abilities.
One thing about training
in the SEALs
is they'll ensure that you have
the physical abilities.
What they can't give people,
and sometimes have difficulty
recognizing it and defining it
prior to the beginning,
is the mental and the heart.
the division's 3rd Brigade
had begun arriving from Hawaii
by airlift.
Their destination was Pleiku
in the central highlands
of Vietnam.
This was to be the 25th
Infantry Division's forward base.
When I was injured in Vietnam,
I was in a hospital.
And I had... an RPG landed
at my left ankle.
And I was wrapped around a rock.
And so I was peppered
from the waist down.
So I survived.
I wouldn't have survived
if I hadn't.
But because I was wrapped
around a large rock
and I was shooting uphill,
it landed at my left ankle,
fractured my left ankle
and peppered me from the waist down.
Because we were in the middle
of a major fight,
I was laying on that mountain
for about seven hours
till I finally got dusted off.
As I was being dusted off,
I got shot in a leg by a sniper.
And I looked and I said,
"I just got shot."
And I said, "What a day."
What happened in the hospital... I was
in the 3rd Field Hospital in Saigon
and the general came in
and was pinning this Purple Heart on me.
And he took a picture.
I wasn't aware of it at the time,
that they take that picture
and they send it to my parents.
It was St. Patrick's Day.
Michael liked St. Patrick's Day.
And I was in Manhattan.
And I was watching the parade.
And I went to give him a call.
And the phone...
there was no answer.
So I called later on during the day
and later on,
and I said, "Something's up,"
because he would have called me back.
So he doesn't call.
Maureen realizes that there's
something wrong right away.
So she calls me and she says,
"Dan, you know, I didn't hear
from Michael on St. Patrick's Day.
I think there's some...
there's a problem."
I wanted to wish him
a happy St. Patrick's Day.
So I didn't hear from him.
And about 10 days later,
I get a phone call
and I pick up and it's Mike.
And the first thing I say is,
"What happened to you?
You were in the hospital."
As usual, Michael is so focused
and determined,
he ignores the initial signs
of there being a problem,
because he's so focused on
completing BUD/S and getting through
that it gets worse
until eventually he can't walk
and they have to cut him
out of his boots and his clothing.
Michael's thought wasn't about
worrying about losing a leg.
It was, "Oh, I'm gonna be rolled
to the next BUD/S class."
Yeah, Murphy during training...
it happens quite frequently...
ended up getting a pretty severe
case of cellulitis,
which, you know, I've had it.
I've had it before.
And it's extraordinarily painful.
It's a pretty serious bacteria...
staph infection.
Apparently he got...
I think it's called cellulitis.
And he almost lost his legs
because of it.
And Michael got it
so severe in his legs
that he ended up having to
roll back in training.
He goes, "Mama, I was rolled."
And "rolled" means that
he couldn't go back
to his original SEAL class.
When you get rolled out
of your BUD/S class,
you... a lot of guys
just lose heart.
We have a saying
in the teams, you know,
"Everyone wants to be a frogman
on a sunny day."
But, you know, most of your days
are gonna be cold, wet and sandy,
especially in BUD/S.
And sometimes one more injury
on top of that
like cellulitis,
and you get rolled back,
it can be that one thing
that pushes you over the edge to say,
"You know what?
I don't want it that much."
He never spoke about
how difficult it was
or the different things
he had to endure
to get through what he did.
He calls me up, I guess, about
the week before he starts Hell Week,
and he says to me,
"Dad," he said,
"do you remember that picture
that Grandma had of you,
you know, from Vietnam
when you were in the hospital bed?"
And I said, "Yes."
And he said, "Could you do me a favor?"
He said, "Do you have any extras?"
And I said, "Yeah."
And he said,
"Could you send me one?"
And I said to him, I said,
why do you want that picture?"
And he says to me,
he says, "Dad..."
He said, "If you could get
through that,"
he said, "then I can
get through Hell Week."
And I just thought to myself...
if a son could give a father
a compliment,
You... you prob...
you probably couldn't get
a better compliment,
that he not only recognized
my service,
but he understood the difficulties
that I went through
and recognizing,
"Dad, if you could get through that,
and... and I was so proud
of what you did,
then I should be able
to get through Hell Week,
which is nowhere near
what you had to deal with."
For Michael, it was just...
it was just one more obstacle
he had to overcome.
And he didn't look back.
And, you know, it's a testament
to his character
and a testament to, you know,
his quiet passion
and commitment to making it
on the team.
He went to SEAL training
to become a SEAL.
That was...
and nothing was gonna stop it.
I sent him a card.
When he was little,
he used to like
the story about the train.
I go to the card store
and I see this card.
And it's a little train.
And it says,
"I think I can, I think I can."
And when you open the card, it said,
"I knew you could. Love, Mom."
He called me when he got it
and he said,
"Mom," he said,
"that was the best present I ever got,"
he says, "that you knew
that I could do it."
These are just tons
of memories...
memories from high school,
junior high, all the way
up until now even.
Over here, these are
some of my jujitsu medals,
some of my science medals.
This medical shadow box...
my dad gave this one to me.
It was for one of my birthdays.
And I remember he gave it to me
and I'm looking at it
and in my mind I'm thinking,
"This is probably a hundred years old."
I'm looking at it now
and realizing, most likely not.
But realizing how
the medical profession
was back then and how it is now,
and, you know,
despite all the advances in technology
and medicine and science,
it's still helping somebody.
I'm very proud,
very proud of Hector
as... as the person
that he is developing into,
very proud that he's choosing...
and I want to be very clear...
not medicine or what it is.
I'm very proud that he's choosing
to give of himself and to help others.
Leaving high school, I knew,
I knew, I knew, I knew
that I was gonna be a doctor.
So, through college, that was
the unifying thread
in all my internships,
all my research experience.
I wanted that passion,
that contact with people,
where I could relate to them
and I could try to help them out
in any way possible.
Obviously, as an undergrad,
I don't have all the skills
where I could be treating patients,
but in any way that I could,
that's what I was willing to do.
Mike and Heather
went to Penn State together.
They knew each other there,
but they didn't start dating
till he had graduated
and he'd gone off to OCS
and was now in the Navy.
And once he was...
once he moved to Hawaii
and was stationed
with his SEAL team out there,
then that's when they
got engaged.
He lost touch with all of us.
We didn't know that he had
circled back with Heather.
None of us knew that.
And when I heard
that they were actually engaged
and she was his fiance,
it made me feel a little bit better,
because knowing how much
he loved her
all through college...
I mean, he was...
she was his Everest.
I mean, he adored her.
A year before she went
to Penn State,
someone introduced them
because she was gonna go.
And he, being Mike, you know...
"I'll show her around.
I'll take care of her."
Evidently he decided
he was gonna take care of her
for a lot longer than the four years.
You talk about sticking to goals
or having mental toughness...
I mean, he always knew
that she was the girl for him.
Yeah, he was crazy
about Heather.
That was... we all knew that.
Mike was pretty quiet.
He was... again,
he was a junior guy out of...
he was an L2,
or a Lieutenant Junior Grade.
And I was, like,
Lieutenant Commander at the time.
When you're forward deployed,
every day is Groundhog Day.
It's always the same
and it's got plenty of work.
And again, I will tell you,
Mike was...
he was just a very conscientious,
dedicated young guy.
You know, he understood
the big picture.
It may not be what he wanted to do
or where he wanted to be,
but he knew
that was the best way
he could support us,
the command, at the time.
And so, he rucked up
and did the job.
And as I talked to him
off-line one time,
I said, "There'll come a day
when you're gonna get tested,
so, you know, just be patient."
And Michael was tested.
He rarely spoke of the SEALs.
He would answer our questions
very vaguely,
I would have to say.
You know, "Oh, it's tough."
"Oh, yeah, I've gone
a couple of places."
And he gave us
some instructions, he said,
"I can't tell you where I am,"
he said,
"but I will keep in touch by e-mail.
Please do me a favor,
do not talk about
time differentials,
because time differentials
deal with the location."
He didn't really
talk much about it
because a lot of things
that he had to do,
you know, they're very tight-lipped
about it, most of them are.
Michael would relate funny stories.
He said, "Oh, it was funny.
I was out."
And he said, "I was running."
He was jogging one time,
and he saw these green eyes
on the side.
And then he saw another pair.
So all they had was
shorts and boots, that's it.
He didn't have
anything else with him.
He said,
"And I didn't carry my weapon."
And he said, "And I got attacked
by a bunch of hyenas."
One of the hyenas
went to go lunge at him.
And he just jammed it right in the face
with his fist.
He yelped like a little dog.
Scurried away,
because they travel in packs.
He said, "I'm kicking him
and trying to run
at the same time."
The reason why I know is because
I found out about it
and then I questioned him.
And Maureen said,
"Michael, there's no hyenas in Iraq."
And he said,
"Oh, Mom, you caught me."
And he said,
"Yeah, I was in Africa."
And that's when he said,
"Mom, I nearly lost my life."
He says,
"It was kind of scary."
When he would come home,
no, he would never talk about work.
It was just, "Hey, how are you doing?"
And everything was about...
never about him.
It was about, "How are you?"
You know?
That's just... no, I never heard...
I would try to pull stuff
out of him,
but never... he would never
talk about work.
We all stayed in touch with Michael
through e-mails
and kept up with what's going on.
When he could tell us
where he was, he did.
You know, that wasn't very often.
But, you know,
he e-mails me one day
and he's like, "Hey, Owen,
can I get a firehouse patch?"
So I said, "No problem, Mike.
I'll get you a patch."
Then in the next e-mail he says,
"Well, actually, I need 30 patches."
"30 patches?"
Now to be honest, that's more guys
than we had in the firehouse.
And he told me that basically
he wanted a reason...
The guys know why they're there.
...the guys could think about
while they're away,
something from home,
to remind them why they're there
and what they were doing
and who they were there for.
So the minute he got
the patches,
Mike sewed it onto his uniform.
And his teammates told me
he wore it every day, every mission,
just to constantly remind himself
and the guys he worked with
that there was a bigger picture,
the people back home
who they were fighting for,
and the people that suffered
after 9/11,
not to forget.
Operation Red Wings
was a mission to get some
real bad guys out in the Hindu Kush.
Those guys were remote.
They were far away.
It was enemy territory.
And we sent in
Mike, Axe,
Marcus and Danny
to go get their eyes
on the bad guys
as close as possible.
And they...
they went out there
and were out there
for several days.
They were compromised.
The enemy found them,
was tracking them down.
And in a real short
amount of time,
probably just minutes
and hours maybe,
they were in a huge firefight.
I was in Iraq serving
when the call came in...
came in to MNFI,
Multinational Forces Iraq,
at about midnight
that four troops were in contact,
or troops in contact.
And I was told,
"Hey, Dan, those are four SEALs."
I said, "What do you have?"
And he said,
"Well, I'll get you more information.
We don't have any names yet, but
they're in the firefight of their life."
And I went back in, you know,
first thing the next morning.
And sure enough, by that point
the battle had been going on,
raging for hours,
and still not a whole lot of detail.
I was watching television,
the news.
And on the news
it had this picture of,
like, fake mountains.
It was almost like,
drawn on there,
like, you know, like mountains.
But they said that
they were outnumbered
and there's just four men
trapped on the ground
and these guys
are under heavy fire.
And I thought,
"Oh, my God."
And then I went, "Oh, no."
I said, "What's the shot of that?"
At the operations center,
they were following the beacons
and they knew
the guys were there,
but they had no idea
what was actually unfolding.
So I went to work the next day
and somebody came in and said,
"Oh, my God, did you know
there was a helicopter
that went down
with Navy SEALs?"
And I said, "Well,
that happened yesterday."
And she goes,
"No, I heard it today on the news."
And I said, "Oh." And then I started
to get a little bit nervous,
'cause it was like, "Well, that was
two stories I heard."
That Chinook that went in
to get those guys,
the Quick Reaction Force,
was a helo aircraft
full of real American heroes,
real dedicated, talented,
tough people.
People that you want to be out
doing that type of work.
So by the time I got home,
actually, Heather
had called and said,
"Did you hear anything?"
And I said, "No."
So, you know, I was starting
to get a little bit more worried
about it and everything.
And she said that... she said,
"Well, there's a number,
but I'm not married to him,
so I can't get through."
So I said,
"Well, give me the number."
As an aviator,
as a helicopter pilot,
I know how badly
you want to get in and help.
They wanted to start saving lives.
And they were just
totally focused on...
on getting in there despite
what was being shot at them,
despite what was around them
or who was in front of them
or to the side of them.
They go and they do the work.
And I knew something was up
because when I called California,
all I said was,
"My name is Maureen Murphy.
I'm calling about my son Mike."
And I kept getting pushed.
And then it was like... you know,
like put onto somebody else.
Then I knew... "Oh, my God,
I didn't even give
any other identification other than
my name and Mike's first name."
And then I had a feeling, "Oh, my God,
he's involved in this," you know?
Heather came down
and asked, you know.
And I said,
"Look, he's in Iraq."
I said, "He just sent me
a picture
for Father's Day
of him and his team."
I said, "And there were mountains
in the background,"
I said, you know, so...
but it looked like desert.
I said, "They're in desert fatigues."
I said, "He's in Iraq."
And she said, "Yeah, but what about
those mountains there?"
Dan got an e-mail
on Father's Day from Mike.
And I got an e-mail from him
and I said, "Well, thank God."
Because he said, "Mama, I'm back,
but I've been away for a while.
I'm sorry I didn't keep in contact,
but everything's okay.
I really like it here. And I got some
really funny stories to tell you
and some sad ones too."
One of my friends
is a county attorney.
His name... Tony.
And he's a reserve lieutenant colonel
in the Army.
And he's been to Iraq
and a bunch of places.
And so he says,
"Oh, how's Mike doing?"
I said, "Oh, he's deployed.
I think he's in..."
I said, "I believe he's in Iraq.
He sent me this great picture
of him and his SEAL team."
And he looks at it and he said,
"He's in Afghanistan."
I said, "No, he's not."
I said, "He's in Iraq."
'Cause I had known
he went to Qatar.
We were like... we didn't really
know what was going on.
But it was getting kind of like
a little bit tense.
And, you know, I said,
"Oh, my God, this is literally
kind of getting me scared,"
you know?
When Heather comes down
and Maureen,
I'm trying to reassure them,
"No, he's in Iraq. Everything's okay."
But in the back of my head, you know,
that little birdie sits there and says,
"Oh, boy," you know,
"Tony told me that's Afghanistan.
Maybe this isn't so good."
Anyway, that night
I went to bed and I just said,
"You know what?
I'm just gonna say my prayers
before I go to bed."
it was almost 12:00.
And I remember saying to John,
"You know what, John?" I said,
"I called about six, seven hours ago."
I said, "We haven't heard anything.
That's probably a good sign."
So I got through
saying my prayers
and as I put out the light,
I heard a car pull up
and I heard four doors closing.
So we parked the car
across the street
in a little parking lot
right outside the house.
And the first thing I notice is
all the lights are on.
And it's pretty late.
It's almost midnight.
But they're awake.
And I thought
that was a good thing,
but it also meant
we had to get to work right away.
And the doorbell rang.
And I told John, so naive,
I said, "John, don't answer it,"
'cause I figured they'd go away.
John answered and said, "Mom,
you probably want to come down here.
There's some guys in uniform
Took their hats off
and stood back for a minute,
asked me who I was.
And I just said,
"No. No."
And I just did not
want to hear it.
We told her right away
that Mike was missing.
We made sure to not say
that he was deceased.
We didn't know what was going on
out in Afghanistan.
We just got word that he
and the three other guys
were missing and they weren't
in communication.
And Father Coyle...
he was really good.
He stepped forward and he said,
"I'm a chaplain."
He goes, "Mike wasn't
in the helicopter,"
which... I had,
like, temporary relief.
And he said, "He wasn't in
the helicopter. He was on the ground."
And he says,
"He's just missing."
She wasn't falling apart
or anything,
because we weren't giving her
much information.
She was trying
to get more from us.
But Father Coyle was there,
kind of settled us all down.
And he said a prayer.
And we all joined in.
Maureen calls me right away.
I live just down the block.
So she calls me and she says,
"The Navy is here, Dan.
Michael is missing."
You're creating these images of,
you know, if he's alive now,
where is he?
Is he captured?
Is he on the run?
It's like really painful
when you don't know
what happened to your child.
Even though he's a grown man,
but he's still your child.
And you don't know if he's maybe
hiding behind a rock
and bleeding to death
or maybe they're torturing him
or doing something,
you know, horrible,
or maybe just
dying there by himself,
you know, maybe
in a cave or something,
if he was lucky enough
to get away.
And so I started asking,
you know, questions about,
what do we know, like,
what happened, et cetera, et cetera.
And they didn't have
a lot of information there.
He's missing?
What are you talking about?
So I leave work. I go. It was right
around the corner from his house.
And everybody's, you know...
and it wasn't confirmed yet.
But I just figured
there's no way he's gonna...
you know, the team is missing.
He's gonna pop up somewhere.
It's just how he was.
He's gonna find a way
to get out.
We try to reassure each other
that everything's gonna work out,
and these are the most elite,
trained military persons
we have in the country.
- Retreated to Maureen's house.
- We retreated to Maureen's house
- to see how she was doing and try...
- To do anything for her.
Provide any comfort and help
we could to her.
And Maureen said,
"Let's get these uniforms off.
It's stressing me out
too much."
So we came over
in regular clothes the next day.
It starts off small and ends up
to be like... like a lot more.
There was probably
30, 40 people at...
you know, at some points
just waiting for news.
There were points
during those four days
that we were able to laugh
and we shared margaritas
and we had some beers.
And we held onto some hope
that we got,
that sprinkled in
from some of the reports.
My house was filled with, like,
a hundred people at a clip,
between people coming and going.
And they were really kind.
They brought all kinds of food.
Even neighbors
I didn't even really know
had brought all kinds of food
and everything,
'cause there was just
so much going on.
And so for six days
he was missing.
But the rest of the time
was difficult, you know.
We passed the time
with small talk.
And the news was on constantly
in the background.
And anytime
anything would come up,
we'd stop what we were doing
and listen.
And it was excruciating.
You know, I said, "Maureen,
he knows what he's doing.
He's great at this.
He's a smart guy," you know.
She said, "But he's not gonna
get hurt on his own.
He's gonna get hurt
trying to protect somebody."
It was a couple of minutes just
before the end of the Fourth of July.
And we got the news
that Michael didn't make it.
And I went into total shock,
'cause I was, like, looking,
and everybody's crying.
And my body just shut down.
I just was like...
all I could think of is,
he's not in pain anymore
and that he's in heaven
all the pain that he probably
did suffer is gone.
And I don't know,
I just got this numb feeling.
And I just was telling people
he's okay, you know,
and not to be upset.
I don't know.
Well, when he showed up
that night in his whites,
because this was formal,
Dan was walking around his back yard.
And I saw him turn to Jeff
and say,
"I don't want to talk to you."
And I heard Mr. Murphy,
I heard him yell a few times
he didn't want to talk to Jeff.
"Keep Jeff away.
I don't want to see him."
Dan had rosaries
that he held for five days
while Mike was missing.
And I had come to find out
during the course of those five days
that those rosaries
had belonged to my mother.
And when my brother Dan
was hurt in Vietnam,
my mother held onto those rosaries
until she knew he was okay.
So for five days
Dan held those rosaries.
He started to walk into his house, and
there was a garbage can to his right.
And he took the rosary beads
and he just threw them in the garbage
and kept walking.
While conducting surveillance
on a mountain ridge in Afghanistan,
he and three fellow SEALs
were surrounded
by a much larger enemy force.
Their only escape
was down the side of a mountain.
And the SEALs launched
a valiant counterattack
while cascading
from cliff to cliff.
But as the enemy closed in,
Michael recognized
that the survival of his men
depended on calling back
to the base for reinforcements.
With complete disregard
for his own life,
he moved into a clearing
where his phone would get reception.
He made the call,
and Michael then
fell under heavy fire.
Yet his grace and upbringing
never deserted him.
Though severely wounded,
he said, "Thank you,"
before hanging up
and returned to the fight
before losing his life.
Unfortunately, the helicopter
carrying the reinforcements
never reached the scene.
It crashed after being struck
by a rocket-propelled grenade.
And in the end more Americans
died in Afghanistan
on June 28th, 2005,
than on any other day
since the beginning
of Operation Enduring Freedom.
This day of tragedy
also has the sad distinction
of being the deadliest
for Navy Special Warfare Forces
since World War II.
One of Michael's fellow SEALs
did make it off the mountain ridge.
He was one of Michael's
closest friends,
Petty Officer Marcus Luttrell
of Texas,
author of a riveting book
called "Lone Survivor."
"Put it this way...
Mikey was the best officer I ever knew.
An iron-souled warrior
of colossal and almost unbelievable
courage in the face of the enemy."
When I was told about it,
that Michael's final words were,
"Thank you, sir,"
or, "Roger that. Thank you, sir,"
Maureen and I looked at each other,
we were not surprised.
Everything about Mike,
his whole life led up to that.
He, you know, led his whole life
with honor, so...
Yeah, I'm not surprised.
I mean, we knew it.
It was his sacrifice.
Leaving high school, I knew
that college was gonna be
a big issue financially.
I knew that if I wanted to go,
I would have to apply myself.
And wanting, you know...
having the desire to go
and having the grades to go
are one thing,
but there are very tangible things
that you must have
in order to continue that goal.
So in my senior year of high school,
I actually applied to 49 scholarships.
Yes. Knowing that,
I only received eight.
However, those eight
have been a blessing.
And those eight have been able
to sustain my entire college career.
The last time I saw Michael
was on Easter Sunday that year, 2005.
And, you know,
we were all set to say goodbye.
And I said to him,
"Bye, Mike."
And he said, "Mama,
you never say goodbye to me."
And I said,
"I don't know why I said that."
I said, "Oh, don't pay
attention to me."
But then he said goodbye to everybody
else and he told Kelly and John,
he said, "Oh, I'll see you." And they
said, "Yeah, we'll see you," like that.
So I didn't think
anything more about it.
I pick him up
and I take him to the airport.
And we're driving to the airport.
We're talking about
a hundred different things.
And I said, "Oh, God," I said,
"Michael, please do me a favor,
call and let us know
that you got home to Hawaii safe."
And I said,
"Hey, Mike, do me a favor,
when you get out to Hawaii,
make sure you give me a call back."
You know, 'cause we... I just want to
make sure that he gets home okay.
So in the meantime,
he never did call.
We were told when he was
gonna come to the United States.
And Danny and I decided
to go down to Dover.
Maureen and I wanted to meet Michael
when he returned to US soil.
They took him out of the plane.
And they took him down
on this big...
it was almost like a carrier
that comes up to the height
of the plane to take the casket.
As the casket came down
and it went down...
all the way down to the ground,
I could picture Michael coming
in his white uniform towards us.
I could just picture him, 'cause he
was... one foot turned in a little bit.
And I could picture him
walking over to us.
When it hit the ground
at about the length of the time
that it could have taken him
to walk over to us,
there was this warmth,
honest to God.
And it was almost like a hug
from him.
And I looked down and I looked
and everybody felt
the same reaction.
And we all...
it was, like, calm.
And I remember
we all looked at each other
and I said,
"Did you feel that?"
And everybody...
my brother-in-law,
my sister-in-law,
Dan, John...
we all felt it.
It was like this warm,
like, calm that came over.
All the way home,
we were just calm.
I wanted to ride with my son.
It was his last trip home.
So I told Maureen that I would ride
in the hearse with Michael.
And she rode in...
her uncle provided a limousine.
She rode with the family
right behind us.
And we drove.
Maryland, we had, like,
a two-police-car escort.
And then New Jersey,
the New Jersey troopers met us
and they were
a two-car escort.
And we get to the Verrazano Bridge.
And at the Verrazano Bridge...
only Commissioner Kelly
of New York City, you know?
New York City
always seems to do it
bigger and better
than everybody else.
Every town stopped traffic,
had police standing on the corner
saluting him.
When we came over the bridges
coming back,
the Belt Parkway was
completely shut down.
Every stop,
those officers would be there
blocking the traffic
so they couldn't get through
and saluting his casket
coming past.
I will never forget that
as long as I live.
Remember, this is before we knew
anything about the battle,
anything of his courage
or what he did.
He was just a Navy SEAL
being returned home.
They close down the Belt Parkway
and there is a New York City
police officer
who salutes Michael
as he goes by.
And I turned,
I put my hand on the casket
and I just said, "Michael,"
I said, "this is all for you.
And you deserve it."
One of the things I'm proud of is,
as first responders,
we take care of each other
as best we can.
And it was nice to know
that they accepted Mike
and his sacrifice
as one of the local guys.
And they went out of their way...
The police department, the fire
department... everybody turned out.
Volunteer or paid,
everybody came together
and did everything they could
to try to make the situation
as easy or as bearable
for Dan and Maureen as possible.
At the funeral,
they filled the church.
The church holds, like,
I think, 2000-2500 people.
The church was filled.
And they were outside.
It was raining too, so everybody
was standing out in the rain.
It was pouring rain.
And I remember getting into
the limousine and looking out,
and I saw these men
that obviously served
in World War II or Korea...
old men...
standing at attention
and saluting him all the way
down the street out of Kings Park.
You know, everybody is still
in a kind of shock at the same time.
You know, you're going
through the motions
and you're, you know, realizing,
but yet not realizing
what's going on,
because you just don't
want to believe that it's happened.
I'll never forget
them wheeling the casket
down the middle of the church.
And it came time
to go right past me,
and that was...
that was the hardest I've cried
in my life.
I'd never felt that before,
because it wasn't a sadness for me.
It wasn't a pity thing.
It was... I...
my heart was broken
for another being and another family.
And I didn't know
what to do with myself.
The fact that he...
that he wasn't there anymore,
that he paid
the ultimate sacrifice,
just killed me,
absolutely killed me.
When we left the funeral home,
the Suffolk Police Department
- a motorcycle escort in the rain...
- An escort in the rain.
...with a couple other
departments as well.
When they approached
the entrance to Calverton,
the local fire departments
got together
and set up ladder trucks
and hung tremendous...
- Huge American flags.
- ...American flags
from the top of the ladder trucks
over the roadway.
Brings back memories now.
You know, I can kind of picture
the flags waving.
The engine trucks...
the fire engine trucks... it was...
it was...
it was awesome, really.
We all park
and there's a private service...
the O'Callaghans
and Michael's friends
and really tight Navy...
an aide had come.
They lift out Michael
and they bring him over
to his gravesite and put him down.
And there's a short service
by Father Coyle there.
And we...
the service ends,
and Maureen and I and John,
we turn
and we are heading back
to the car,
which is literally 50 feet away.
And we just leave Mike.
We were the last two to leave.
We turn around and we head back.
And Maureen's phone goes off.
And I remember it so vividly.
She says, "Who would be
calling me now?
They all know
we're at a funeral."
I look down
and my cell phone's going off.
And so I look at my cell,
I open it up.
And then I see tears
welling up in her eyes.
And my first thought was,
"Oh, she got more bad news. What?"
And I said,
"Maureen, are you okay?"
And she can't speak.
And she just hands me the phone.
And I look at the phone
and it's a message from Michael
that says,
"Mama, home safe and sound.
Love, Mike."
And in it, it says,
"Mama, home safe and sound."
And I thought, "Oh, my God,"
you know, that's a gift,
knowing that your child...
temporarily you won't see him,
but he's okay.
Now remember, we're in July...
July 13th now, he's being buried.
The message on March 31st was,
"Mama, got home
safe and sound," to Hawaii.
"Love, Mike."
But we get the message from Michael
after we leave the gravesite,
saying, "Mama,
home safe and sound."
And now of course Maureen says
that's Mike letting her know
that he's okay.
I don't know why...
why it chose
to come at that
particular point,
just after we've left
the gravesite
and before we get to our car,
where we've just said goodbye
to our son
and we're going back,
and Maureen gets this message.
I guess it was
about the last week in August, I think,
I get a call
from the White House
from President Bush's
military liaison
to indicate that Michael's being awarded
the Medal of Honor.
My dad came here
as, you know, an immigrant.
And he was just ready to burst,
'cause he was like,
"I'm here in the White House,
and my grandson is receiving
the Medal of Honor."
But it's typical that he gets
the Medal of Honor,
just 'cause he's
such an amazing person.
You know,
it's an outstanding feat
that he got that.
It's unbelievable.
President Bush was so gracious.
He let us come into the...
he wanted to meet us...
into the Oval Office.
We present him
with Michael's dog tags
and he says,
"Thank you very much."
Dan and I had given him,
like, gold-plated dog tags.
And he actually put them on, and
I'm looking, like, "What's he doing?"
And I can tell the same thoughts
going in both our heads...
"Why is the president getting
undressed in the Oval Office?"
He said that Mike
was "next to my heart."
I thought that was so nice.
And he gives Maureen
a hug and a kiss
and he gives me a hug.
And he says to us,
which was really cool...
he goes, "Murphs, you did good."
He said, "But you know what?"
He said, "I gotta tell you,
I did better."
He said...
"I had Michael
right next to my heart."
As soon as I was charged
with writing that speech,
Michael Murphy popped into my head.
He was still fresh in my mind.
And even in my dorm room,
I had a picture of him on my wall.
As I started to get to know and
research more about Michael Murphy,
I started to see a lot
of parallels in our lives.
I mean, we only grew up
15 minutes from each other.
His dad was a DA.
My father worked in law enforcement.
He was a lifeguard over the summers.
I was a camp counselor over the summers.
He had a heart
and a passion for people
that drove him into
the Navy SEALs.
And I have a similar heart
and passion for people
that has driven me
towards medicine.
That morning
one of the staff call us
and say, "We have a surprise.
Hector was selected."
And I... we were floored.
We were very proud to hear that.
And my husband and I decided that
we were not gonna share that with him.
And my parents said,
"Hey, I think there's something
that's gonna be going on."
And they gave me an inkling of it,
but I didn't really know
what was going on.
I just knew that something special
was gonna happen that night.
It was surreal.
It was just unbelievable
to see this big object.
And we saw how it was being built...
it was done in sections...
when we went up to Maine.
And just looking up
at this huge thing
and response for him.
There were, like,
15 or 16 family members and stuff.
We turn and we look up
and there's Michael's name
in huge block letters...
"Michael Murphy."
And it literally stopped me dead,
I mean just... whew.
They had to pick a warship,
to name it after Murphy, for sure.
I'm sure Michael...
I'm sure he's upstairs in heaven, going,
"Man, you guys are making...
this is way too big a deal for me."
And he's probably thinking,
"I'm a team guy."
One of the purposes,
the fact that's also a defense ship,
you know, for protecting the country
and its assets,
like, the idea that this is,
you know...
all the responsibilities
and all the things
that this ship represents,
and that it's named after him.
Our kids are gonna read about
and learn in history
that my cousin, or brother,
was... is part of history.
It's added
to the great Navy tradition
of naming our warships
after heroes.
And I couldn't think
of a better guy or a better candidate
for a warship to be named after
than Michael.
Mike would never want
a ship named after him.
If it was up to Mike,
he would have every name
that ever served in the military
on the side of a ship other than his.
If he could actually fit every name,
he would definitely do that.
It was important to us
as a family
that the ship,
while it's named after Michael,
embodies the spirit
of 19 really brave heroes.
That would have been
important to Michael,
that, you know,
"This is about my team.
I didn't operate in a vacuum,
and therefore
you remember me best
by remembering my men."
In thinking about all the things
that are being named after him,
on one hand, I'd say,
you know...
it's amazing,
but it's not enough.
I'm sure Mr. and Mrs. Murphy
would still rather have their son back.
I know I'd rather have
my friend back.
But it's nice
in this age
of the venerating of celebrities
and people that have contributed
nothing to this world,
the fact that someone
like Michael Murphy,
who is such
a ridiculously unbelievable
now has people looking up
to someone like him.
When I see the pictures of little boys
going to visit his gravesite,
whether it be his namesake
or things of that nature...
you know, hallelujah.
Because he's the type of person
that people should look up to,
that they should
name things after.
When I got to the awards dinner,
there were, I believe, four or five
other scholarship recipients
for the Suffolk Federal
Credit Union scholarship.
So we were all there.
We were all great.
I was just honored to be within...
to be chosen to be a part of it
and to be among these other top
high school seniors from Long Island.
One of Michael's
favorite sayings was,
"Education will set you free."
And I said, "I can't think
of any way better
to remember Michael's legacy,
or tribute"...
'cause remember, this is well...
long before the Medal of Honor...
is to have a scholarship
where we can offer scholarships
to deserving people.
And while we were there,
they started to announce
that there would be an inaugural
scholarship in Michael Murphy's honor.
There's a certain criteria.
They have to be team players.
They have to play in sports,
you know, keep their grades up.
The kid that is...
has his nose to the books,
that is working every day
to better himself,
that is a well-rounded kid,
not a kid who's solely focused
on academics,
because you have to be
You have to have interests
in the arts or sports
or, you know, community events.
That's the kid that's gonna
get that award.
But when they announced
my name, I was...
I was shocked. I was floored.
I was proud. I was happy.
And then it all started to sink in.
When I started to realize
it was his name
and who it was for
and who it represented,
I realized it was more than
just a check and a pat on the back,
but it was an honor.
It was a legacy that I was given.
You look at a man
who has probably dove to depths
that are classified and nobody knows,
jumped out of planes at heights
on oxygen, you know,
doing HALOs or whatever...
you know, so he did it all,
you know.
And I think in my mind
and my heart
at least I know that he lived
a really full life.
People should
remember him just...
I know everybody knows
as a great guy,
but Mike would have done
anything for anybody.
He would have been there for you
no matter what,
any type of weather.
He... I don't know.
It's kind of hard to put into words
why people should remember Mike,
but Mike is just the greatest guy
I've ever met in my whole life.
I guess what I would
tell him is that,
knowing him so much as a child,
I regret that I didn't get to spend
more time with him as an adult.
Giving myself over to others
is something
that from my parents has been ingrained,
from my family it's been ingrained,
and from Michael Murphy,
it just solidified it even more.
He gave me that opportunity,
and it's my chance
and my opportunity
to go forth with it.
So, I mean, it had to be
when Michael was, I guess, about 12
and we were down two runs.
It was the ninth inning.
And he hits a home run.
And he wins the game.
And comes around the bases...
and all those boys
literally surround him,
you know,
the way they normally do,
because they won the game.
It was important.
And they're jumping around
and telling Michael,
"Michael, you won the game.
You won the game."
And it was funny...
Michael turns around to them
and says,
"I didn't win the game.
This was a team sport."
And he said,
"if you hadn't got on base,
if you hadn't got on base
for me to hit the hit
that scored the runs,
we wouldn't have won
the game."
That particular game
was so like him, you know.
And it was just
a microcosm of his life.
It was always...
it was never about him.
It was always about
his teammates, his men.
And so that's why
when things happened
like they happened on that mountain,
it didn't surprise
Maureen and I at all.
I'd say thank you.
- I'm a better person for knowing Mike.
- Absolutely.
I think all of us,
you know, were blessed
to have him in our lives.
I'd thank him for every day,
- every second I had with him.
- We're gonna miss him.
- Definitely.
- Absolutely.
I'd give anything
to have him back,
but I wouldn't trade anything
for what we had.
All the money
That e'er I had
I spent it in good company
And all the harm I've ever done
Alas, it was
To none but me
And all I've done
For want of wit...
- There's no need to tape.
- No?
- No.
- I have to. Just a little bit.
Are you blushing?
Good night,
and joy be to you all
Fill to me the parting glass
And drink a health whate'er befalls
Then gently rise
And softly call
Good night and joy
Be to you all...
All the comrades that e'er I had
They're sorry for my going away
And, oh, the sweetheart
fore'er I had
She wished me
one more day to stay...
He kind of just...
he was okay with...
not that he never feared
the consequences.
He was okay
with the consequences.
You know,
this is the guy that...
that driving back to Penn State,
and instead of figuring out
a way for another ride,
he just wanted to go with me,
even though I already had
someone going with me.
And he just decided to lie down
in the bed of my pickup truck
for the entire trip
back to Penn State.
Now, I mean,
if anything goes wrong,
he's in trouble.
And that was clearly
spelled out to him.
He said, "Don't worry about it.
I'll be fine."
And that was just...
that was just how he was.
I mean...
- I never heard that.
- Yeah, just lying...
I mean, that's a 300-mile trip.
And it's not from San Diego
to Los Angeles.
We're talking in the dead of winter,
going to Penn State,
he's just lying down
in the bed of a pickup truck.
And I don't know if his mom
knows that story, so...
CrossFit gyms recently participated
in a nationwide workout
to honor fallen heroes
and raise money for military charities
such as the Navy SEAL
The annual event honored fallen
Navy SEAL Lieutenant Michael Murphy.
It was just a good cause.
It just brought a lot of camaraderie
with just the military
and just kind of really honoring
the fallen heroes
that died for our country.
Our owners Jake and John
are former Navy SEALs,
and so they're very big on giving back
to the Navy SEAL Foundation.
The workout was
one of many events that are put on
by the CrossFit community each year
to support the military.
CrossFit East Village is
a huge military community.
A lot of our members
are actually part of the military.
Murph, you're a stud.
A huge inspiration for all of us
in the CrossFit community.
A hero, a real hero
for everybody that knows your story.
They paved a trail
Pointed to a path that's less
Pulled the breath
That blew your sails
Taking your heart
From your chest
Oh, but time
Is sometimes too late
To find out
what you think you might
You decide
If it all comes down to fate
Is this sacrifice
The one thing right?
Oh, 'cause I am here