Posted by Cathy Gowdy on Saturday, March 11, 2006 at 11:48:31 :
San Francisco Chronicle
Wednesday, May 22, 2002
MURPHY, Thomas Francis Jr.
MURPHY, Thomas Francis Jr. - Passed away peacefully, at home, on May 18, 2002, surrounded by his loving family. Beloved husband of Anita Meier; caring brother of Maurene Leet and her husband Bill; cherished father of Kevin and Brian Murphy; predeceased by his caring parents Thomas and Marie Murphy. Thomas joined the San Francisco Police Department in 1963 and retired as Chief after 29 years of service. He was born and raised in San Francisco attending St. Cecilia's, St. Ignatius, Sacramento State (BS) and the University of Southern California (MS). He split his time between San Francisco and Mill Valley. He will be deeply missed by his extended family - Jim Collins and Kathy Mahoney, Karyn Kane and Doug Williams, Fran Kane, and Richard and Mary Meier; as well as numerous other cousins, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and friends. He and his family were honored in his final months by enormous support and compassion from countless friends and the San Francisco Police Department. Visitation will be offered Thursday, May 23rd 6:15 PM at St. Ignatius Church, Parker at Fulton, followed by a Vigil at 7:00 PM. Memorial Services will be celebrated at St. Mary's Cathedral, Gough at Geary, Friday, May 24th at 9:30 AM. For further information please contact DUGGAN'S SERRA MORTUARY. THE BUD DUGGAN FAMILY (650) 756-4500 (415) 587-4500
San Francisco Chronicle
Thursday, May 23, 2002
Thomas Murphy Jr. -- once acting chief of S.F. Police Dept.
by Susan Sward, Chronicle Staff Writer
A funeral Mass will be celebrated Friday for Thomas Murphy Jr., who served briefly as acting chief of the San Francisco Police Department in 1992 after three decades as a widely respected member of the force. He died Saturday of cancer at the age of 61.
Friends said that Mr. Murphy, who joined the department in October 1963, loved police work, threw himself into his work with unbounded enthusiasm and conducted himself as a caring professional and gentleman.
Attorney John Keker, former president of the San Francisco Police Commission, said, "Tom was the finest sort of cop -- tough but loving toward the people he was trying to protect.
"If cops were all like Tom Murphy, we wouldn't have any problems with our Police Department," Keker added. Former Police Chief Willis Casey, who knew Mr.
Murphy for more than two decades, recalled that "Tom Murphy the human being was really special -- he really cared about people. He was a great listener and he wasn't judgmental."
Chris Cunnie, president of the San Francisco Police Officers Association, said, "Tom was a cop's cop. When he was chief, he made a statement to the effect 'Don't try to blame the cops on the street -- the buck stops with me.' That was the kind of guy he was -- highly respected by the cops on the street."
Criminal defense attorney Jim Collins, Mr. Murphy's cousin and a former police officer himself, said, "We were raised as brothers, and a person could never have a finer brother than Tom."
Born in San Francisco, Mr. Murphy was the son of Thomas Murphy, a "patrol special" officer who was hired by South of Market area merchants to walk the beat in their neighborhood. His mother, Marie, was a housewife.
Mr. Murphy was a graduate of St. Ignatius High School. He received a bachelor's degree at Sacramento State University and a master's degree in public administration from the University of Southern California.
After eight years on the force, Mr. Murphy became an assistant inspector in 1971, inspector in 1976, sergeant in 1979, lieutenant in 1984, captain in 1988,
commander and deputy chief in 1991.
When he was deputy chief, the city was hit with demonstrations over the Gulf War and he handled it well despite the fact he did not have much experience with street protests, Casey said.
In 1992, Mr. Murphy served for six months as acting chief after the San Francisco Police Commission fired his predecessor, Richard Hongisto.
Mr. Murphy was passed over for the full-time position when then-Mayor Frank Jordan selected Anthony Ribera as chief. Sources said at the time that Jordan feared that Mr. Murphy was too closely tied to former Mayor Art Agnos. Mr. Murphy retired in late 1992.
Officers and other personnel who worked alongside Mr. Murphy recalled his kind, warm nature.
Kathy Brandin, a retired fingerprint technician, said, "He was a class act all the way,"
Shoji Horikoshi, retired director of the department's crime lab where Mr. Murphy worked from 1967 to 1986, said his colleague was unfailingly concerned when helping someone with a problem.
"He was really interested in your situation, and he tried to help you -- this was an outstanding trait of his character," said Horikoshi.
Mr. Murphy was found to have cancer only recently and during his last weeks of life remained confined to bed in his family's San Francisco flat in the Parkside area. His dog, Coco, stayed on his bed most of the time.
Mr. Murphy is survived by his wife, Anita, and two sons, Kevin, 28, and Brian, 27.
A viewing will be held today at 6:30 p.m. with a vigil at 7 p.m. at St. Ignatius Church, 650 Parker Ave., San Francisco. On Friday at 9:30 a.m., the Mass will be celebrated at St. Mary's Cathedral at 1111 Gough St.
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