Community Spotlight_Marty Murphy

This month’s community spotlight focuses on a man that has spent his life in New Ross contributing to many community organizations and helping make this community what it is today. As often is the case volunteers such as this work endless hours in the background without recognition. This month is dedicated to Marty Murphy.
Marty graduated from New Ross School in 1978 and then pursued a teaching degree. After college he returned to New Ross where he became employed at Graves Island Provincial Park, became a substitute teacher throughout the county and started growing Christmas Trees. I will always remember Mr.Murphy as a substitute teacher when I was younger. Our class was quite unruly, and Marty would hold up a piece of chalk and tell us all our names were in that chalk and any one of our names could be put on the detention list, it was our choice if they landed there or not. MaryAnn Turner said he was one of the best substitute teachers she could call on. He was reliable and kept everything organized. He also volunteered his time to drive NRCS sports teams to games at other schools entertaining his passengers with practical jokes and stops at McDonalds. When he stopped substituting and began working in the Christmas trees full time he said it was because the trees didn’t talk back. Many may not be aware that Marty has a passion for writing and history. While working on Graves Island he volunteered to research and write the History of Graves Island and reached out to members of families that once lived there to create an interpretive display of photos and donated items. In 2016 he wrote the History of the Christmas Tree Industry in New Ross interviewing about 60 people for the information (This can be found on the site) He also worked with Bob Hutt to research video The Return to Family Values about tree industry (on You Tube). And wrote a song about the loss of Freddie Meister and the search for him (on You Tube) joined by Wanda, Colette and Sterling. Marty has always had a passion for bettering New Ross. In the 1980s he was a member of the ambulance committee that had been working to have an ambulance based in New Ross. Although that may have been unsuccessful, he also worked hard on the New Ross Health Coop board to recruit a doctor for our community. This was successful for some time bringing Drs Sheehan, Worthylake, Sullivan and Robertson to New Ross as well as Dr. Haas, Dentist and Dorothy-Mark Blood collection and an animal hospital for a short time. Over the years Marty has taken an active role in many committees including secretary- treasurer for the New Ross fire commission from 1985 to 2012. He was even made an honorary firefighter! He has been the New Ross Credit Union Credit Committee secretary from 2000- present and is a member and treasurer for both the New Ross Rink Committee and the New Ross Trails Society. Also taking an active role in the Church Marty was a Church Memorial Park Trustee 1987- 1993, holding the secretary role some of those last years. He has been since 1978, and currently is, the caretaker of the New Ross Baptist Church where he is also a choir singer and part of the New Ross Gospelers singing for nursing homes and shut ins. Also, Baptist Church Trustee and Cemetery Committee member for several years. It doesn’t stop there! Marty has been a member of the New Ross Farmers Association for about 20 years and is currently the vice president. With the help of his wife, Wanda, they have ran the hamburger booth at New Ross Fair for the past 10 years. Marty worked closely with George Hamlin to secure funding to replace the old Farmers bingo stand and with Grant Reeves to fund building of covered arena and expand parking at fairgrounds. For the past 20 years (and counting) Marty has set up a display about the Christmas tree industry at the New Ross Christmas Festival, many of those years jointly with Tommy Reeves. He has also been a director on the Lunenburg County Christmas Tree Producers Association director for the past 6 years. He played for and organized games for “Fifth Wheel” hockey team playing at Chester rink. And has worked hard to help bring a rink to New Ross for the community to enjoy every winter. Other roles have included being a judge for 4H Public Speaking competitions and science fair judge for not only New Ross School but also Lunenburg County. And he has played Santa Claus since 1990s to present. Marty has always been a caring man, spending many years caring for his mother and has helped Stuart Eustace with life’s challenges and living better. Along with his wife Wanda they envisioned Ruby’s Trail to say thanks to all in New Ross and other places who were so supportive to their family during Ruby’s illness and death and a way to honor Ruby’s life. A very special undertaking for Marty and his family that also shows how being part of the community can be so important and meaningful. They hope to create a healing garden along Ruby’s trail where visitors can get healing after the loss of a loved one or other life difficulty. Two comments of influence, by the late Russell Hiltz, about community work that have always stuck with Marty are: “You GOTTA HAVE A THICK SKIN” meaning you must take criticism and “SHIT OR GET OFF THE POT’ meaning get the job done or get out of the way. Marty certainly has contributed to our Community and this article is meant to shine some light on those that spend so many countless hours behind the scene. It is meant to celebrate all they have done to make this community the great place it is. THANK YOU Marty!!