Born dirt poor in north Texas, his alcoholic sharecropper father Emmet disappeared early on in his life and his mother died when he was sixteen. He became a sharpshooter, helping to feed his family with squirrel and rabbit he had shot. When World War Two broke out he attempted to enlist in the Marines but was declined due to his youth and slight stature.
According to Times writer Paul Houston, “A friend once calculated that the slightly built Murphy had killed, wounded or captured 240 Germans.” The autobiography is full of dialogue that one would expect from GIs bantering back and forth amongst themselves as they trudged the roads and fields of Italy, France and Germany. The dialogue is so realistic it is as if he actually had total recall of those days.
Sullivan is an internationally-published writer residing in northeast Ohio. He is a veteran of U.S. Army service with the 2nd Armored Division in the U.S. and Europe. He has visited Murphy’s gravesite in Arlington National Cemeter