Emma Rose Murphy, of Bridgewater, MA, passed away in the early morning hours of June 3, 2020 after a sudden relapse ended her battle with addiction. She was 22-years-old.
Murphy was born in Boston on June 21, 1997 and raised on Nantucket. The eldest of six siblings, Emma was a natural born leader who took pride in caring for her younger brothers and sisters. She loved leading “her tiny flock” up and down the beaches of the island and was a proud owner of a Nantucket Nectars bottle cap fact which read,“Emma Murphy is the oldest sibling of Nantucket triplets, Tom, Kate and Meg.”
A child of the sand and sea, Emma spent much of her youth traveling extensively with her family aboard boats helmed by her father. At the age of 10, she traveled to Antarctica with her mother, on what she called a trip of a lifetime.
Murphy had red hair, energy to spare, loved horses, wildflowers, and Grey’s Anatomy marathons. The medical field was a fascination and following graduation from Nantucket High School in 2015 - a year which included a Junior Miss scholarship win and volunteer work at Our Island Home - she became certified as a Massachusetts based E.M.T.
Murphy spent four years working as a Boston based first responder and was currently employed by Fallon Ambulance Service. In February 2020, she received a special commendation for a successful life saving effort during a patient’s cardiac arrest. Emma’s technical responsibilities changed dramatically when COVID-19 emerged in Massachusetts. For the past four months, she moved from emergency medical care to pandemic testing in Boston nursing homes and low-income communities. Determined and diligent, she tested, treated and consoled hundreds of COVID-19 patients, working long hours wearing full body PPE gear. On the day of her death, JetBlue Airlines announced Emma and her Fallon Ambulance Partner, Ed, had been selected as grand prize winners in The JetBlue Healthcare Heroes Sweepstakes.
Emma was a fiercely loyal, tender-hearted, bright and sparkling individual. If you met Emma Murphy, you did not forget Emma Murphy. Her old-soul spirit will forever be missed and her family is deeply saddened by this tragic… and unnecessary loss.
She is survived by parents Linda Strachan of Nantucket and Kent J. Murphy of Harwich; Siblings Thomas, Kathryn, Meghan, Sam and Daniel Murphy; Grandfather Kent “Pop” Murphy, Partner Mary Ade of Nantucket and Partner Jacqueline DeGroff and her children Dylan, Cody and Hillary of Harwich. She is predeceased by Grandmother Olive “Nanny” Murphy and brother, James Murphy.
A private family service will be held on Friday, June 12 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, followed by graveside service at St. Mary’s Cemetery. A celebration of life will be held in the future.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in her memory to Fairwinds: Nantucket’s Counseling Center with all proceeds benefiting those seeking treatment for substance misuse and mental health to better their lives.