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MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK

 
Anonymous Coward
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06/25/2008 11:37 AM
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MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
Remembering Rick Murray
By Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman
The late Rick Murray will be remembered by area locals as a prolific writer who doubled as a bulldog reporter. Murray, 58, was pronounced dead Friday afternoon at Cooper Hospital in Camden. A heart attack claimed his life, but the fruit of his 39 years in professional journalism leaves behind an eternal taste of delight in the hearts and minds of those who laid eyes on his work.

“He wrote stories like no one else I ever knew,” said Scott Frost, features editor at The Trentonian. “The way he expressed the written word was unique. His intensity was unusual, but it worked.”

“Murray always unleashed a full-court press in every assignment, never yielding, sometimes prodding, begging, dealing for an interview, comment or any tidbit that would improve a story,” said The Trentonian’s L.A. Parker, who, like Murray, is a longtime, award-winning writer.

“His final memory with me came last Thursday when he left the office. ‘You take it easy, L.A.,’ Murray said to me. For a guy who had his own run-in with heart disease more than a year ago, Murray’s message and untimely death hits home.”

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The news of Murray’s death especially hit home in Hamilton Township, which was Murray’s primary area of coverage for this newspaper.

“It broke my heart because I really got to know him,” said former township Councilman Vinnie Capodanno. “I couldn’t believe how close I got to him. I didn’t look at him as a reporter, I looked at him as a friend, especially a friend of the town.

“He was good for Hamilton. He was the best. He just cared. He wasn’t afraid, and he was very fair. He knew how to investigate. He put the story together and was always fair. There ain’t gonna be another Rick Murray,” an emotional Capodanno said, his voice cracking.

“Working with him in the short time that I did was impressive,” said Mercer County Democratic Chair Rich McClellan. “I admired his dedication to getting the story right. I think he understood the complicated background of Hamilton Township, and was able to communicate (the politics there) in the pages of the newspaper, which is not an easy thing to do by any stretch of the imagination.”

Murray, who was fascinated by personal UFO narratives, attracted legions of ufologists in his “Out There” weekly column. It led some to wonder whether an alien aircraft beamed the South Jersey native to another dimension.

“The Bible tells us certain things about our souls going to heaven, but how does that happen?” asked retired Air Force pilot George Filer, who corresponded with Murray as a member of the NJ and PA UFO Study Group. “I think there’s things going on that we don’t understand. Rick, he was a person with an open mind. He was able to look into things in a fairly scientific manner. He wasn’t convinced that modern science had all the answers.”

“I thought he was a real nice fellow,” said Bordentown’s Pat Marcattilio, leader of the NJ/PA UFO group. “I’ve known him for three or four years, and he’s written a few columns about us, as he’s been to my UFO conferences and meetings.

“He helped put UFOs in the limelight where people could actually read about what was happening in the country and local area about subjects that people normally wouldn’t have any way of knowing. He really asked questions that made you think and always wrote the truth about what was going on.”

The entire Trentonian staff is saddened by the sudden loss of Murray, but determined to keep his memory and legacy alive.

“I knew when I needed something done I could go to Rick and he would get it done,” said Andria Carter, online editor at The Trentonian who occasionally doubles as an assignment editor. “I will miss Rick greatly; he was a great worker.”

“I like to think that he’s out on assignment and he’s just around and not gone,” said staff writer Artemis Coughlan, who sat two desks down from Murray. “A truly nice guy has been silenced.”

“I send my condolences. I still can’t get over it,” John Kroschwitz, municipal chair of the Democratic Party in Hamilton, said Saturday. “On (Friday) I was gonna give him a call and congratulate him on the Congo story. He was a wonderful journalist and a pleasure to work with.”

The last article Murray wrote was his June 20 column on the euthanized German shepherd Congo — a column that will go down as one of the greatest works of penmanship in Trentonian history.

“When I came in and saw that, I was like ‘great column, nominate in contest, even a Pulitzer,’” said Trentonian City Editor Paul Mickle. “I got at least three calls of people calling in and congratulating him. People told him, ‘great job,’ and it really was an excellent job.”

Murray felt compelled to write that column after receiving criticism on his prior coverage of the German shepherd. Poetically stringing sentences, Murray concluded his column saying he foresaw the demise of the violent-prone Congo well before officials in Princeton put the dog out of commission.

Mickle enjoyed the article so much that he cut the article out of the paper, wrote “GREAT JOB” on it and then placed it in Murray’s office mailbox.

On Saturday, Mickle was in the office and shed tears over his longtime colleague. “It really hurt that I put it in his mailbox and he never got to see it,” he said.

The Congo column, meanwhile, remains in Murray’s mailbox inscribed with Mickle’s praise.

[link to www.trentonian.com]
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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06/25/2008 11:37 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I miss him very much!
Anonymous Coward
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06/25/2008 11:38 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
hf
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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06/25/2008 11:56 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
He was a hell of a writer and loved the subject of UFO's.

He was cutting edge and published a novel on an Ezine in 1997 in what I believe was the first novel published on the internet.
locomotion

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06/25/2008 12:12 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I miss him very much!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 457129


He couldn't ask for a better epitaph than that...

Condolences on the death of your friend. rose


Couldn't help but notice his age as 58, same age at time of death as Tim Russert, same age at time of death as several of my relatives and friends, same age as me...57-58 seems to be an age of great portent, maybe the age of decision...'do I stay or do I go?'
If we do not hang together, we shall surely hang separately. ~Thomas Paine

I've been dead before. ~Spock, The Unknown Country (PEACE)
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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06/25/2008 03:28 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I miss him very much!


He couldn't ask for a better epitaph than that...

Condolences on the death of your friend. rose


Couldn't help but notice his age as 58, same age at time of death as Tim Russert, same age at time of death as several of my relatives and friends, same age as me...57-58 seems to be an age of great portent, maybe the age of decision...'do I stay or do I go?'
 Quoting: locomotion



Yeah, I am 59 as well. We were planning on hanging out this summer and doing a number of things. He tried to convince me to take a reporter's job with the paper last fall.
locomotion
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06/25/2008 04:17 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
39 years in professional journalism is a long time. Most people would have changed careers in that time, so he must have really enjoyed what he was doing. Sounds like he did it well.

Are you also a journalist?

Hopefully you will find it possible to go ahead and do some of the things the two of you had planned for the summer, altho it will be bittersweet remembering him as you do them.
Anonymous Coward
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06/26/2008 04:23 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
He was an amazing man. One of a kind--I've never known anyone like him...
i is that which i is

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06/26/2008 04:31 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
Couldn't help but notice his age as 58, same age at time of death as Tim Russert, same age at time of death as several of my relatives and friends, same age as me...57-58 seems to be an age of great portent, maybe the age of decision...'do I stay or do I go?'
 Quoting: locomotion


hi Hi,

Depends on whether you are ready to graduate from this kindergarten?

Some of us have to stay and continue doing penance and others are here to help in the coming transition.


Peace, love, and enlightenment. grouphug

If we do not live in peace together, we die in war together!
"I am not afraid to stand alone, but it's always more fun if I have friends standing with me." Lena Coleon.
watched
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06/26/2008 04:33 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I'm sorry- condolences to you on the loss of a good friend. hf
watched
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06/26/2008 04:34 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I'm sorry- condolences to you on the loss of a good friend. hf
Angel_Eyes

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06/26/2008 06:03 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I'm sorry OP for your losss... hf
I am proud to be a deplorable Trumpster!
locomotion

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06/26/2008 06:17 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
He was an amazing man. One of a kind--I've never known anyone like him...
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 458465


flowers

Hope you are feeling somewhat better today OP.

It's my personal belief that your friend is not really gone from you. You will see him in many ways, be reminded of him in certain situations, when you hear something that he might have said, experience something he would have enjoyed, face a situation he would have helped with - he will be with you always.

peace to you friend,

loco
If we do not hang together, we shall surely hang separately. ~Thomas Paine

I've been dead before. ~Spock, The Unknown Country (PEACE)
SCREAMMMMMMM
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06/26/2008 06:28 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I AM SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS AS WELL

I AM MOST GLAD YOU KNEW HIM FROM WHAT YOU HAVE SAID

WE ARE SO LUCKY TO KNOW A FEW IN OUR LIVES THAT REALLY MEAN SOMETHING TO US

MAY YOUR PAIN LESSON WITH TIME

ENJOY ALL THE MEMORIES YOU HAVE OF HIM.....HE IS A PART OF YOU
locomotion

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06/27/2008 11:53 AM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
Couldn't help but notice his age as 58, same age at time of death as Tim Russert, same age at time of death as several of my relatives and friends, same age as me...57-58 seems to be an age of great portent, maybe the age of decision...'do I stay or do I go?'


hi Hi,

Depends on whether you are ready to graduate from this kindergarten?

Some of us have to stay and continue doing penance and others are here to help in the coming transition.


Peace, love, and enlightenment. grouphug

If we do not live in peace together, we die in war together!
 Quoting: i is that which i is


Hi i is that which i is !

Makes sense to me! This idea of the age of 57-59 being a decision making period has been rolling around my mind for some time as it just seems so many folks I've known pass on around then, or stay around for decades longer. Likely I'm just sensitized to it now, somewhat like the 11:11 thing for some folks. I've been forbidden by our daughter from even thinking about cuttin' outta here, so here I am...still...apparently for the duration. Dunno, feels like penance to me LOL!
If we do not hang together, we shall surely hang separately. ~Thomas Paine

I've been dead before. ~Spock, The Unknown Country (PEACE)
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 457129
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06/27/2008 01:23 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
Couldn't help but notice his age as 58, same age at time of death as Tim Russert, same age at time of death as several of my relatives and friends, same age as me...57-58 seems to be an age of great portent, maybe the age of decision...'do I stay or do I go?'


hi Hi,

Depends on whether you are ready to graduate from this kindergarten?

Some of us have to stay and continue doing penance and others are here to help in the coming transition.


Peace, love, and enlightenment. grouphug

If we do not live in peace together, we die in war together!


Hi i is that which i is !

Makes sense to me! This idea of the age of 57-59 being a decision making period has been rolling around my mind for some time as it just seems so many folks I've known pass on around then, or stay around for decades longer. Likely I'm just sensitized to it now, somewhat like the 11:11 thing for some folks. I've been forbidden by our daughter from even thinking about cuttin' outta here, so here I am...still...apparently for the duration. Dunno, feels like penance to me LOL!
 Quoting: locomotion



Rick didn't think of quitting either. It hit him like a bullet while riding on a train.
locomotion

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06/27/2008 01:44 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
All things considered, Rick's exit strategy (going like a bullet) is my preference when the time comes. One minute I'm here, next minute I'm gone.

Rick just sounds like one helluva guy. Reminds me of someone I once knew, long long ago and far far away...
If we do not hang together, we shall surely hang separately. ~Thomas Paine

I've been dead before. ~Spock, The Unknown Country (PEACE)
Ridge
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10/02/2008 02:19 PM
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Re: MY FRIEND DIED OF A HEART ATTACK ON FRIDAY RIDING THE TRAIN TO WORK
I just saw this a couple months after the fact, and I'm wondering if this is the same Rick Murray that I worked with at the Atlantic City Press 15-20 years ago? Sounds like the same guy - a true and unique character, very memorable. If so, my condolences to his friends, family and readers - he will be missed.

Bill LeConey


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