SJU loses academic pioneer Murray

St. John’s professor, passed away on August 4 at the age of 91. Murray was one of St. John’s most influential academic pioneers. Most notably, he developed the Department of Psychology during his tenure and served as its chair for 18 consecutive years.

Rev. Murray began his teaching career in 1952 at Niagara University before accepting a position at St John’s. During his time at SJU, Murray made a concerted effort to not only improve the curriculum, but to reinvent it from the ground up.

His work resulted in nationally recognized achievement, with other educational institutions and graduates of the field doing their part in the path set before them by Rev. Murray. In addition to teaching, Rev. Murray was an avid writer. His work includes nine books and more than 70 articles. He also served as a consultant to various publications, one of which was the Journal of General Psychology. On June 30, 2006, Rev. Murray officially announced his retirement from
St. John’s.

He received the gold medal, the University’s highest honor, this past June for his contributions to the field of Psychology and the University in general. When asked about the passing of Rev. Murray, St. John’s president Donald J. Harrington noted, “As an educator and as a priest, he modeled St. Vincent’s ideals of service brilliantly, dedicating himself to the mental health of his fellow human beings, researching new methods of treatment to alleviate the suffering
he encountered, or simply providing an attentive, compassionate ear for those who needed it.”
He added, “Our University is stronger, richer, and better for all that he has brought to it and done for it.”

Rev. Murray was laid to rest at the Miraculous Medal Shrine in Philadelphia on August 8.