MALUM NALU | Malum Nalu Blog
Murphy, known the length and breadth of PNG for his passion for the “greatest game of all”, passed away in the home of elder brother, Brian, a Catholic priest.
Murphy, a Kiap in the late 1960s who later moved into education, commerce and became president of the PNG Rugby Football League, reluctantly moved to Australia in 2008 because of diabetes, having his right leg amputated.
His first emergence from hospital was to attend a barbecue for his beloved PNG Kumuls, who had travelled to play a Cairns team. Until the day he died Murphy was passionate about rugby league in PNG.
“For the last four years, he has lived in Tamworth,” Murphy’s second son, Daniel, told The National.
“He was always torn between two cultures: the PNG culture and the Australian culture. He always carried a bilum everywhere.
“He passed away in Orange on Friday morning, at about 7am, at the place of his brother, Brian Murphy, who is a Catholic priest.
“His last job was at Niugini Oil in Mt Hagen, but due to his health, he could not work again.
“He did some voluntary work at a youth centre here in Tamworth.
“For the last four years, he has been recovering with his family in Australia, as well as being emotionally attached to rugby league back in PNG.”
Murphy, of Irish origin, came to PNG as an 18-year-old in 1967, and stayed for 42 years.
After his stint as a Kiap, Murphy was a primary school teacher in Henganofi and Kainantu, later serving with the Department of Provincial Affairs, National Sports Institute, Rothmans and Niugini Oil.
He is survived by his three sons Adrian (39), Daniel (36), and Anthony (33) and four brothers – Patrick, John, Brian and Bill.
His funeral services held at St Joseph’s Catholic, Orange NSW, at 2pm on Friday.