Monday, May 16, 2011

Test of Truth

I am always amazed at how two people can look at the same glass of water and one sees it as half full and the other as half empty...and find it fascinating that two people can read the same words on a page and comprehend two totally different messages.

With the glass of water, it is neither half full nor half empty, it simply is what it is...all depending on your perspective. The words on the page are exactly the same for both readers; how the words are interpreted depends on the lens through which they are viewed.

Like many of you, I have found that for every individual who steps out from the crowd and attempts what many view as difficult, there are plenty of individuals who will stand back and laugh when the doer stumbles, carp when they speak, and scoff when they write. Any doer has been "tested" by these critics.   

Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States had this to say about the critic in his "Man in the Arena" speech delivered April 23, 1910.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat."

While researching and writing SEAL of Honor I learned from the life and wisdom of Michael Murphy that the major value in life is not what you get. The major value in life is what you become. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

A Time To Reflect...

Last weekend was a great tribute to a fallen warrior--LT Michael Murphy, however; it was so much more than that. As Maureen Murphy, LT Murphy's mother and ship's sponsor so appropriately noted in her remarks, "even though the ship will bear Michael's name, it will carry the spirit of all 19 of those those boys killed in Operation Red Wings."

All to often, I think we honor an individual to such an extent that we tend to forget about those who trained and fought with them and most importantly, supported them. The fact is, hundreds of individuals help produce the warriors that were on that mountain in June 2005. Hundreds if not thousands of individuals came together in a united cause that prepared those men for that mission. In any endeavor, successful or not, there are many people who work behind the scenes to make sure the equipment is ordered, correctly assembled, available when and where it is needed, coordinate and transport where and when needed that never get recognized and are seldom acknowledged.

That is certainly the case with any military mission. Our Special Operations forces are best best of the best, are at the very tip of the spear when it comes to inflicting maximum damage to those who would do us harm.  With that training, education and experience comes a certain degree of confidence; confidence in the fact that you are the best trained and best equipped warriors in the history of warfare.

As I stated in SEAL of Honor, fortunately "there is a difference between confidence and conceit,  commitment and convienence, and character and contrition. It is the SEAL's fundamental difference in thought process and attitude that provides them with confidence, commitment, and character. Thankfully, conceit, convenience, and contrition simply do not apply to the warrior community."

"SEAL's are not maniacal individuals hell-bent on self-destruction.  They have hopes and dreams for themselves and their families just like each of us do...SEALs are acutely aware that freedom is not free.  They understand better than most that everything has a price that must be paid...SEALs give all and ask for nothing. Their reward is coming home to their families and friends, watching them and others enjoy the freedoms they helped secure, ever vigilant that for as long as the Lord tarries, the fight is never complete."

The next time we hear of a great military achievement, let us remember all those unsung heroes behind the scenes that made it possible for those out front to get the job done. And when we learn of the death of one or more of our warriors, let us mourn their loss, our loss, but let us not concentrate how these warriors died, but celebrate how they lived.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

SEAL of Honor Media Appearances

Dan Murphy was a guest on today's Fox & Friends and author Gary Williams was interviewed by Brian Thomas on 55KRC.  Dan will be a guest on the Michael Smerconish Show in Philadelphia on Friday, May 13, 2011.

Monday, May 9, 2011

SEAL of Honor Christening Photographs on Flickr!

We have over 100 christening photographs with many more to come up on Flickr.  See the link on the SEAL of Honor FB page.

Former SECNAV Donald Winter speaks at the Maine Maritime Museum

I was one of about 75 invited guests to have the opportunity to join former SECNAV Dr. Donald Winter as he spoke to the Casco Bay Navy League regarding the process involved of naming of U.S. Navy ships. Holding a Ph. D. in physics, Dr. Winter served as the 74th Secretary of the Navy under President George W. Bush and is one of the most personable and genuine people I have ever met. Dr. Winter wrote a heartfelt endorsement for SEAL of Honor and I am honored to call him a friend. 

Mast Stepping Ceremony Michael Murphy-DDG112 - May 6, 2011

Placing a coin at the step, or base, of the mast of a newly constructed ship is a custom still retained as wooden ships have become steel. This tradition during ship building had its origin with the ancient Greeks and Romans. As legend has it upon dying, it was customary to place coins in the mouths of the dead in the belief that this would ensure payment to Charon for ferry passage across the River Styx and into the afterlife. Because of this, when ships were sent off to battle, enough money was placed in the bottom of the mast to ensure the entire crew had enough money to pay Charon for passage in the event they did not return. As a navy, being steeped in customs and traditions the ritual has survived. The coins are placed in the mast today but now represent and symbolize certain aspects of the ship's birth and a gesture of safe passage for the crew.

The Michael Murphy's mast box contains the following items:
  • Three United States Quarters to represent:
               State of New York (2001) LT Murphy's home state
               State of California (2005) Year of Operation Red Wings
               State of Washington (2007) Year LT Michael Murphy earned the Medal of Honor
  • One United States Dime (2000) to represent the year LT Murphy was commissioned as a United States Naval Officer.
  • One United States Nickle (2002) to represent the year that LT Muprhy attained his SEAL qualification.
  • Twenty United States Pennies to represent the birth year of each of the members of Operation Red Wings.
  • One United States Penny to represent the birth year of Ms. Maureen Murphy, LT Murphy's mother
  • One United States Penny to represent the birth year of Mr. Daniel Murphy, LT Murphy's father.
The coin denominations sum is 112 and represents the ship's hull number. Additionally there are a nuymber of commerative coins and memorabelia in the Mast Stepping box.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

It's All About Team

LT Michael Murphy was all about TEAM.  That is why the longest chapter in SEAL of Honor:  Operation Red Wings and the Life of LT Michael P. Murphy, USN is about all 19 of those of our Navy SEALs and Army Nightstalkers KIA on June 28, 2005...and all 19 initials are welded into the keel-plate of the USS Michael Murphy. 

SEAL Sacrifices Since 9/11

As we justly celebrate the heroic actions of our nation's most elite warriors, let us also take this opportunity to remember the ultimate sacrifices of the Navy SEALs who have been killed in the Global War on Terror:

Neil C. Roberts                   
Matthew J. Bourgeois          
Thomas E. Retzer                
David M. Tapper                
Brian J. Ouellette                 
Matthew G. Axelson           
Danny P. Dietz                    
Michael P. Murphy             
Jacques J. Fontan               
Daniel R. Healy                  
Erik S. Kristensen              
Jeffrey A. Lucas                 
Michael M. McGreevy, Jr. 
Shane E. Patton,                
James Suh                         
Jeffrey S. Taylor                
Jason Frewald                   
John W. Marcum              

Marc A. Lee                  
Michael A. Monsoor      
Joseph C. Schwedler     
Jason D. Lewis              

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

SEAL of Honor now on Twitter!

Many thanks to our new Twitter Page Administrator Jo Lombardi and of course, a big Hooyah to Kim Wolfert our incomprable Facebook Page Administrator. 

Navy SEALs - America's Most Elite Warriors

Have a question about our Navy SEALs?  Do you want to know more about our nation's most elite warriors?  The SEAL of Honor website has all the answers and links.  Both the "Home" and "Resources" tab will provide you with a host of resources.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Welcome Aboard!

Team Murphy would like to welcome our newest member...Jo Lombardi. Jo is a member of Soldier's Angels on Long Island, has been a long-time friend of the Murphy family and assists every year with the annual 5K Run/Walk and has selflessly given of her time to coordinate local booksigning events. Jo will be our Twitter Page Administrator. Welcome Aboard Jo.

From The Family of Senior Chief Dan Healy

     The Healy family thanks God that Osama bin Laden no longer walks this earth.
     This man put into motion the events that killed thousands on September 11, 2001 and which eventually culminated, for us, in the death of my son, Dan Healy in Afghanistan when his rescue helicopter with seven other Navy SEALs and eight Army Nightstalkers was shot down as they were trying to save four other SEALs on the ground.
     We understand that this does NOT mean that the War on Terror is over, but at least the "Head of the Snake" has been cut off!  Other radical Muslims, who he has tainted with his vicious, scewed outlook, will most likely retaliate throughout the world but we WILL prevail!  More than that, we MUST prevail.
     When we have young men like my son and so many others who haven't hesitated in sacrificing their lives for our safety then we can rest assured that our democratic way of life will continue despite attacks from within and without.
     How proud we are of our men and women who completed this decade long mission. Thank you. God bless you and God bless America.

Natalie Healy
Exeter, N.H.
Gold Star Mother of Dan Healy, U.S. Navy SEAL
KIA Afghanistan, June 28, 2005

They're Going Fast!

With the news of the death of Osama bin Laden by Navy SEALs, the Murphy family has been deluged by the media as well as several Operation Red Wings families. 

Amazon has completely sold out of the hardcover edition of SEAL of Honor and the paperback edition is #1 at the Naval Institute Press. 

A Message from Gold Star Mother Natalie Healy

This morning I received an e-mail from Natalie Healy, mother of Navy SEAL Senior Chief Dan Healy who was killed on June 28, 2005 in Operation Red Wings regarding the death of Osama bin Laden:

   It seemed like a normal Sunday night- I was just waiting to see who would be fired on Celebrity Apprentice when they broke into the show announcing the President would be speaking shortly. Many scenarios rushed through my mind but nothing of this magnitude. It was the LAST thing I expected because, frankly, Osama seemed to be on the back burner in this War on Terror. I imagined him in a cave in Pakistan or perhaps even dead. Halleluyah!!! Justice is served.
   I was up until after one a.m. just trying to absorb this surprising, unexpected news when WMUR TV called for an interview but there was still much that I hadn't heard at that point. My emotions were racing , I called Danny's sister, Jen in California and she had just gotten the word from another SEAL. His other sister, Shannon, is on vacation at Myrtle Beach so I''l talk to her later today. It was a short night- my phone started ringing at 6:48 this morning.
   During this time my emotions ran the gamut between being stunned, amazed and strangely sad. When the news first broke I knew it had to be Special Forces and/or Navy SEALs but it wasn't until my friend, Marguerite, called me this morning in tears and said, "It was the Navy SEALs who got him" that I burst into tears.
   As most of you know I normally don't do that but the overwhelming pride, gratitude and relief I felt caused that instant reaction. Its seems like I've been holding my breath since the day Danny died. I didn't know it until today when Dan's teammate took out this evil man whose demented philosophy set into action events that ultimately resulted in my son's death.
   As Deb Lee, another SEAL mom said she has no doubt that they had help from their fellow warriors in heaven- like our Danny and her son, Marc and Donna and Steve Hardy's son, Nate. I am so proud of them all and wouldn't be surprised at all to find out that they had something on them reminding them of their slain SEAL brothers and if not their on their bodies definately in their hearts.
   Once, frustrated with the power to change our lives that Osama bin Laden had , I asked Danny while he was in Afghanistan, "Will you just get him, please?" He said they were trying. Then June 28 happened. Five years later his teammates completed the mission. It was full circle from Sept. 11 to now and the sense of justice being served is enormous. I am grateful that our mens' courage and strength prevailed.

God Bless You All, God Bless America.


Natalie, you speak for all of us. We are so proud of all those who gave all they had so others might live.  I am looking forward to seeing you at the christening of the USS Michael Murphy.

Navy SEALs...When You Care To Send Only The Very Best

A platoon sized element of SEAL Team SIX, also known as DEVGRU executed a flawless mission to  bring Osama bin Laden to justice...justice meaning death. With over 3,200 Americans of the World Trade Center, Pentagon and United Airlines Flight 93 serving as the judge, a platoon of SEALs as the jury and a single SEAL as executioneer, bin Laden literally lost his head in the battle and after identification confirmation was buried at sea and returned to the depths of hell from which he came.

Let this serve notice on all who would do us harm, we will pay any price, endure any burden and wait vigantly for the right time to execute justice. On September 11, 2001, freedom was attacked and since that day freedom was defended "at a time of our choosing."  As President Bush said, our fight against terrorism does not end with al-Quada. We still have much work to do

As we pause to reflect on the good news of victory over evil, let us keep in mind the thousands of our nation's best who gave the ultimate sacrifice to make this day happen. I am sure the news of bin laden's death is bittersweet to the families; but to them I say, raise your head high, shoulders back and look the world in the eye. It was your sons and daughters that made it happen. You better than most understand the real cost of freedom as you have paid the most for it. Let us strive not only to be the beneficiaries of their service but faithful stewards of their ultimate sacrifice.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

bin Laden Brought To Justice!

It took 10 years but the head of the snake has been severed.  But let us not delude ourselves, the radicals will attempt to ramp up their terrorist efforts. Let us continue to be ever vigilant! For LT Murphy and all those killed in the fight against terrorism, freedom was attacked and freedom has been defended. God Bless all those who defend freedom.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Talking with Evil...

While attending the World Economic Forum in Switzerland in January, 2003, then-Secretary of State Colin Powell was asked by the former Archbishop of Canterbury if America was relying too much on "hard power" such as military action as opposed to "soft power" such as appealing to the common values of the major religions and building trust based on those values.

Secretary Powell responded by affirming the "soft power" of values but that it was the "hard power" of the military that, for example helped free Europe and the so called "soft power" of peace and reconstruction could take place.

He then said, "We have gone from our shores repeatedly over the last hundred years and we've done this as recently as the last year in Afghanistan and put wonderful young men and women at risk, many of whom have lost their lives, and we have asked for nothing except enough ground to bury them...and otherwise we have returned live our own lives in peace. But there comes a time when soft power or talking with evil will not work where...hard power is the only thing that works."

Friday, April 22, 2011

Why He Fought

In early September 2000, aboard the USS Intrepid,  a young man raised his right hand and took his oath of enlistment and four months later, again raised his right hand and repeated his commissioning oath as an ensign in the United States Navy. In both instances he swore to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America. On June 28, 2005, LT Michael Patrick Murphy was killed in the forbidding terrain of the Hindu Kush in eastern Afghanistan fulfilling his oath.

In honor of his faithful service and selfless sacrifice in defense of the Constitution and our way of life, we will be giving away a free pocket copy of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States with the purchase of any copy of SEAL of Honor: Operation Red Wings and the Life of LT. Michael P. Murphy, USN ordered through our web site or at any author event.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Book Availability at USS Michael Murphy Christening Event

We have partnered with our good friends Sue Steer and Jason Morin at the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath, Maine to make plenty of copies of SEAL of Honor available following the remarks of former NAVSEC Dr. Donald C. Winters on Thursday evening and during the christenig ceremonies on Saturday morning. We are working on making sure as many of the copies as possible are signed by the author and the entire Murphy family, but we cannot guarantee that signed copies will be available to everyone.  BIW officials are expecting between 2,000 and 2,500 people in attendance.

The Mission

The mission of SEAL of Honor is to advocate for the remarkable legacy of not only LT Michael Murphy, but also those on his team that perished on 25 June 2005 and in a much broader sense all those who choose to wear our nation's uniform and defend the freedoms that have handed to each of us by the previous generation.

To help us with our overall mission, we are asking all friends and fans of our Facebook page to add this site to your personal blog and to encourage your friends to do the same. There is nothing we cannot accomplish if we all work together.

A review of our site's resources tab shows we are very active in promoting other causes and pages that share a similar mission and vision. If you know of a worthy site or program that could use our support, send an e-mail to our Pubicist via the contat tab under Team Murphy...and if you know a similar organization with a Facebook page or blog, please recommend SEAL of Honor to them as well.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Family Aid Military Concert - Miamisburg, Ohio

Look for us at our next event the Family Aid Military Concert sponsored by the organization A Dollar To Care. We are looking forward to gathering with thousands of freedom and military loving Americans, elected officials and military veterans on Saturday, April 30, 2010. 

Reserve Officer's Association (Ohio Convention)

I had the pleasure of speaking to the Reserve Officer's Association (ROA) Ohio Convention in Mansfield on Saturday. Met many wonderful patriots and the decades of service in the room was staggering as was the number of highly decorated veterans' from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghaninstan. 

I also had the honor and privilege of meeting with retired Air Force Colonel Walker Williams III, the national president of the Reserve Officer's Association. Colonel Williams logged over 9,000 flying hours during his 30 year career and is a exemplary representative of not only himself, but the Air Force and the ROA. I look forward to addressing over 500 ROA members at the 2012 ROA National Convention in Washington, D.C. in February.

To all our readers, if you are a retired officer from any branch of service including the NOAA, check out the ROA at

Friday, April 15, 2011

LT Michael Murphy Tribute Video - SEALing My Fate by Craig Palmer

Under the Media Tab is the tribute video to LT Michael P. Murphy. Partial proceeds go to support the LT Michael P. Murphy Memorial Scholarship Foundation, a tax-exempt foundation. When asked why he wrote the song, Craig replied:

"I met Michael the first day of school, freshman year at Penn State University. The shared experiences over the next four years were countless, priceless and timeless. Michael was always the guy cheering the loudest for an individual's success, while also providing the strongest understanding and support through an individual's crisis.

At times, his selflessness was almost saddening; as it sometimes seemed like a burden he carried to ensure happiness among those around him. His compassion for others was unmatched, and his loyalty to friends was like nothing I have ever seen, nor will ever see again.

I loved Michael as a friend...I still speak to him in my times of need...and I am still so incredibly saddened that his life, his breath, and his beauty were stolen from us all.

This song is not for him. This song is for his family and for those who never had the opportunity to shake his hand."

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Seeds of Greatness

Michael Patrick Murphy was an ordinary man with an extraordinary sense of duty, responsibility, and moral clarity. Such moral clarity and sense of duty had its roots in a God-fearing set of parents who sowed within him the seeds of greatness that granted him the wisdom and strength to answer a call that few will ever receive...History is replete with those rare individuals who when called upon to make the ultimate sacrifice do so willingly.

Inscribed in a Wheaton College classroom are the words, "He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose."  Despite our modern culture's obsession with winning and the rhetoric of subversion, was Michael Murphy's young life wasted, or did he know and understand something that we haven't yet figured out. Herein lies the real story. Michael Patrick Murphy clearly has it figured out. He voluntarily gave up an earthly life he could not keep in exchange for an eternal life he cannot lose--demonstrating the wisdom many never achieve.   SEAL of Honor, ppIX-XX

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Naval Institute Press Top 10 Title

Since it's release on April 2, the softcover edition of SEAL of Honor has been a Top 10 bestseller for the Naval Institute Press.  Thank you to all our fans and friends.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Chief Petty Officer Nathan Hardy

On April 9, 2011 while attending the Northeast SEAL RDAC event at the Boys & Girls Club in Stanford, CT, I had the great honor to meet the parents of Navy SEAL Chief Petty Officer Nathan Hardy who was killed in Iraq in 2008. Steve and Donna Hardy, like their son, are pillars of uncompromising integrity and vocal proponents of our men and women in uniform. Steve Hardy's passionate words to the large crowd served as a source of encouragement and inspiration to both the SEAL candidates and their families.  We are looking forward to seeing them again soon at the christening of the USS Michael Murphy in Bath, ME.

Long Island Events

The author and Murphy family participated in four events the past few days...The Long Island Shields, New York office of the FBI, Northeast SEAL RDAC and the Holy Name Society. We were warmly received at each of the events and LT Murphy's legacy is being well maintained.

Be sure to keep up to date with the event schedule of Team Murphy on our web site.

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Welcome to our new website and blog. We have worked very hard to anticipate your needs and provide you with valuable resources. Visiting our events calendar allows you follow Team Murphy, so check the calendar frequently as new events are added as they are confirmed.

Our blog will provide thoughts, insights and impressions from our events and provide updates for our fans, friends and followers.