CAPT J. Michael Murphy, USN (Ret.)
May 22, 1947 – November 29, 2020
Captain J. Michael Murphy was raised in Camarillo, California, and attended the California Maritime Academy in Vallejo, California. After graduation in 1968, he sailed in the Merchant Marine as a Third Mate for one year until he was selected for Navy Flight Training where he qualified in helicopters and received his wings as an Unrestricted Naval Aviator. Captain Murphy received his wings on December 28, 1970 at HT-8, NAS Ellyson Field, Pensacola, FL. He was Navy Helicopter Designator Number R-11330.
Captain Murphy’s operational tours included: Station Pilot at NAS Alameda flying the UH-1N and station fixed wing aircraft; Helicopter Combat Support Squadron Three (HC-3) flying the CH-46D and serving as Officer-in-Charge on multiple detachments deployed in the Pacific and Indian Oceans; two tours on the USS New Orleans (LPH-11), first as Assistant Air Boss and then Air Boss and, from 1985 to 1987, Capt. Murphy commanded Helicopter Combat Support Squadron Eleven (HC-11). Throughout his career he attended various schools and colleges, earning additional degrees in Computer Science and International Relations. He was also a graduate of the Naval War College Senior Course. Captain Murphy’s last Navy tour was in Washington, D.C., on the OPNAV staff. Captain Murphy retired from the Navy at the rank of Captain in 1992.
After his retirement from the Navy, Capt. Murphy (USN Ret.) was hired by Maersk Line, Limited, a ship management company based in Norfolk, Virginia. Captain Murphy (USN Ret.) commanded five ships for Maersk over a period of 16 years. During his last 10 years with Maersk, he delivered and put into service three newly built LMSRs: USNS Bob Hope, USNS Charlton and USNS Soderman, which he commanded for six years before coming ashore.
On January 1, 2008, Captain Murphy (USN Ret.) came ashore to work in the Washington, DC, office of the American Maritime Officers (AMO) as a government relations representative. Captain Murphy (USN Ret.) was elected in 2010 and 2014 to four-year terms as National Vice President, Government Relations. He served the professional interests of the seagoing AMO membership on all regulatory matters before the Maritime Administration, the U.S. Coast Guard, Military Sealift Command, the Defense Logistics Agency, the U.S. Agency for International Development and other related federal agencies. Capt. Murphy (USN Ret.) also represented AMO and seafarers worldwide at the International Maritime Organization, the International Labor Organization and International Transport Workers’ Federation for more than a decade. In the 2018 elections Captain Murphy (USN Ret.) decided not to stand for election. Post election he was hired by the AMO Executive Board to remain in Washington with the new title of Government Liaison, where he continued to work closely with the many government agencies and committees that regulate the maritime industry. He continued that work until his retirement from AMO in December of 2019.
On November 29, 2020 Capt. J. Michael Murphy died peacefully in his home in Camarillo, California in the company of his beloved wife of 50 years.