6 ❖ Mount Vernon Gazette ❖ January 28 - February 3, 2010
Photo by Mechelle Schloss/The Gazette
Dorie Arbach, music director, Metropolitan Washington Baha’i Chorale, leads the Mass Choir Sunday evening, Jan. 17, at annual Martin Luther King birth- day celebration at Bethlehem Baptist Church. Choir Festival
Harry W. ‘Murphy’ Wright
Retired Naval Capt. Harry W. “Murphy” Wright, 75, currently from Alexandria and formerly of Watersmeet, Mich., died Tues- da , Jan. 12, 2010, in Chicago, following a year-long illness.
Murphy was born Oct. 29, 1934, at the Marenisco Hospital to the late Harry and Genevieve (Codd) Wright of Watersmeet. He attended and graduated from the Watersmeet Township High School with the class of 1952.
fare and Intelligence System Development.
In addition to numerous other service and campaign medals, Captain Wright retired from the Navy having earned the following Naval Decorations and Citations: 31 Strike- Flight Air Medals, three awards of the Navy Commendation Medal (with Combat “V”), Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star Medal, six Navy Unit Citations, the Merito- rious Unit Citation, the Vietnamese Air Gal- lantry Medal, and 14 Clusters to the Air Medal for meritorious achievement in flight recognition of his 329 support missions flown in connection with operations against North Vietnam.
On June 30, 1956, he married the former Edith Peterson, daughter of Harold C. and Violet Peterson of Watersmeet.
After attending Michigan Technological University in Houghton for two years, Murphy entered the Navy in October 1954 as a naval aviation cadet, and later obtained a bachelor’s of science degree in 1963, and a master’s of science degree in financial management in 1973.
Upon completing naval flight training in April 1955, he was commissioned an En- sign. After serving in various capacities in the U.S., in 1965 he reported for duty with Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron One at the Naval Air Station in Atsugi, Japan. His squadron, a vital unit of the U.S. Seventh Fleet, flew from attack aircraft carriers in the Gulf of Tonkin and the Da Nang Air Base in Vietnam.
In May 1971, Murphy became Command- ing Officer of RVAH-11 in the Western Pa- cific. Following that tour he assumed com- mand of Reconnaissance Attack Squadron Three at Key West, Fla., where he served until 1975 when he was assigned to Headquar- ters, Naval Electronic System Command, in Washington, D.C. There he served until re- tirement and was assigned duties in the command’s project office for Electronic War-
Following retirement from the Navy, Murphy and his wife Edith made their home in Alexandria, Va., where until recent years Murphy was the proprietor of a successful equipment rental business, A&A Rental Sta- tion.
Murphy is survived by three daughters, Tamara (Robert) Deppen of Chicago, Kari Warren of Alexandria, Edith (Steve) Skidmore of Alexandria; nine grandchil- dren; two sisters, Mrs. Joyce Mott of Racine., Wisc., and Mrs. Bonnie Caron of Watersmeet; one brother, retired Captain Daniel (Barbara) Wright of Widbey Island, Wash.; two sisters-in-law, Susan Alexander and Karla Mirick; his best friends, retired Captain Lou and Olga Hettinger; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Edith Peterson Wright in 1998; his father, Harry W. Wright in 1970; his mother, Genevieve (Codd) Wright in 1992; a brother, Benjamin C. Wright in 1946; and a nephew, Michael Frahm in 2001.
Memorial services will be held at Mount Vernon Presbyterian Church (2001 Sherwood Hall Lane, Alexandria, VA 22306) on Saturda , Feb. 6 at 10:30. Interment will be in Arlington National Cemeter , Arling- ton, with full military rights accorded.