CARMEL - Putnam Hospital President Mike Weber remembered Harry Murray as a
"giant of a man" whose 15,000 hours of volunteer community service to the hospital served as an "incredible resource."
Mr. Murray, 98, died Sunday morning at the hospital that he loved and served for 28 years with his wife, Ruth at his side.
Mr. Weber said, "Harry's enthusiasm and energy were an example for us all. He was one in a million and he'll be missed."
One of Mr. Murray's admirers at the hospital, fellow volunteer Vincent Roberto Sr. of Mahopac, himself a spry 81, said "Harry served as an inspiration
to all of us. Harry was a volunteer's volunteer and we will miss him."
Mr. Murray moved to Carmel in 1972 and was determined to do something for his community. '
During an interview on the occasion of his 97th birthday, June 27, 2000, Mr. Murray recalled how his neighbor, Ambrose LaVigne, the former president of the hospital, advised that he was looking for dedicated volunteers. I took Amby up on the offer and I've been there ever since."
Up until the end, Ruth Murray recalled that her husband was incredibly active and well spoken. During the interview, Mr. Murray was asked what he credited his longevity to. His reply: I have no idea. My father died when he was 60 and my mother didn't live past her 38th birthday. Of my seven brothers and sisters, only my baby sister, Agnes McClory, is alive."
Ruth and Harry Murray were married for 20 years. Mr. Murray's first wife passed away a few years before he married Ruth. Mr. Murray has a 63-year-old daughter from his first marriage, Cathryn Donohoe, who is an editor for the Washington Times.
In his younger days, Mr. Murray served in silent motion pictures. He became a stock contract player and doubled for the great star of the day, John Gilbert,
who acted alongside Greta Garbo in many 1920s era films. In 1950, Mr. Murray joined CBS in New York City as a studio manager. Within a year, he was elevated to managing all of the New York studios for the network.
Mr. Murray remained with CBS until 1968 when he retired.
Ruth Murray credited her husband's long life to a "positive attitude. Harry kept very active 'til the end. He walked faster than I did and he refused to sit
on the porch and rock. I never knew a man who at the age of almost 99 did his crossword puzzles in ink."
A funeral service was held yesterday (Wednesday) at the Adams-Cordovano Funeral
Home in Carmel.
Even in death, Mr. Murray will continue to benefit the hospital he loved and served for. His family has requested all contributions in Mr. Murray's memory
be made to the Putnam Hospital Center Foundation.
Mr. Weber said, "What an appropriate thing to do. Harry was Putnam Hospital Center. We love him, and we will miss him. He was a marvelous man and a
gentleman in the truest sense of the word."