PATCHOGUE, NY, USA
LT, SDVT ONE, PEARL HARBOR, HI
ASABADAD, AFGHANISTAN 06/28/2005
Michael Patrick Murphy was a United States Navy SEAL posthumously awarded the United States military’s highest decoration, the Medal of Honor, for his actions during the current War in Afghanistan. He was the first person to be awarded the medal for actions in Afghanistan; and the first member of the U.S. Navy to receive the award since the Vietnam War.
Michael Murphy was born and raised in New York and after graduating from High school he went to Penn State, graduating with honors and dual degrees in both political science and psychology. After college he accepted a commission in the United States Navy and became a United States Navy SEAL in July 2002.
Murphy was sent on several missions while participating in the Global War on Terrorism but was killed on June 28, 2005 after his team was compromised and surrounded by Taliban forces near Asadabad, Afghanistan.
His mother describes her son Michael as “someone who always stuck up for the underdog.” His father says he was “honest, kind, caring — probably the antithesis of what you would call a warrior.”
In addition to the Medal of Honor Murphy received other awards including the Silver Star and Purple Heart as well as a United States Navy destroyer, a post office and a park named in his honor.
Medal of Honor Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life and above and beyond the call of duty as the leader of a special reconnaissance element with Naval Special Warfare task unit Afghanistan on 27 and 28 June 2005. While leading a mission to locate a high-level anti-coalition militia leader, Lieutenant Murphy demonstrated extraordinary heroism in the face of grave danger in the vicinity of Asadabad, Konar Province, Afghanistan.
On 28 June 2005, operating in an extremely rugged enemy-controlled area, Lieutenant Murphy’s team was discovered by anti-coalition militia sympathizers, who revealed their position to Taliban fighters. As a result, between 100 and 160 enemy fighters besieged his four member team. Demonstrating exceptional resolve, Lieutenant Murphy valiantly led his men in engaging the large enemy force. The ensuing fierce firefight resulted in numerous enemy casualties, as well as the wounding of all four members of the team. Ignoring his own wounds and demonstrating exceptional composure, Lieutenant Murphy continued to lead and encourage his men.
When the primary communicator fell mortally wounded, Lieutenant Murphy repeatedly attempted to call for assistance for his beleaguered teammates. Realizing the impossibility of communicating in the extreme terrain, and in the face of almost certain death, he fought his way into open terrain to gain a better position to transmit a call. This deliberate, heroic act deprived him of cover, exposing him to direct enemy fire. Finally achieving contact with his headquarters, Lieutenant Murphy maintained his exposed position while he provided his location and requested immediate support for his team.
In his final act of bravery, he continued to engage the enemy until he was mortally wounded, gallantly giving his life for his country and for the cause of freedom. By his selfless leadership, Lieutenant Murphy reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.”