On Wednesday morning we welcomed Dr. Mark Murphy to our breakfast meeting. Dr. Murphy has lived in Savannah since the age of five, when his father was stationed at Hunter Army Airfield as an army surgeon during the Vietnam war. Dr. Murphy has been a distinguished kindergartener, student, medical student, medical resident, doctor, and professional gastroenterologist from the time he entered school until the present time. His awards are legion and keep on coming; he currently serves on the Board of Directors of Memorial Health Medical Center and has been chosen for “Best Doctors in America” for twelve years in a row.
 
Among his current prestigious titles is the President of the Savannah Book Festival, for Dr. Murphy, in addition to being a doctor, is a writer. He has published two novels, “The Shadow Man,” and the award winning young adult work, “The Curse of the Thrax.” He is currently the writer of a regular column for the Savannah Morning News.

Dr. Murphy told us that he had been a writer for much of his life, that this was his original passion, that he wrote because he ‘had to,’ and that his inspiration has always come from the environments in which he found himself in the course of his life. His home life was full of story-telling. His father, of whom Dr. Murphy spoke with fondness, was the family raconteur, backed by his mother who was an English teacher. When he first qualified as a doctor and established his practice, he stopped writing, but only for a short while. Dr. Murphy explained to us that he needed to write, and as a doctor that imperative was particularly compelling. Doctors, he said find themselves in situations of life and death. His patients’ lives are dramatic, sometimes expressed verbally, sometimes more by body language, and physicians have to figure out the story, what’s going on? What’s wrong? The more skilled doctors learn to see the world through the eyes of others. Doctors, of course, have a reverence for life, they have the opportunity to see others faced with key life situations, its beginning, its end, and struggles in between. These experiences, of decent people, sometimes of villains, coupled with the beauty of Savannah which surrounds him, get translated into his writing and provide the environment which inspires Dr. Murphy to write the articles we all enjoy.
 
Pictured below is President Bill, Dr. Mark Murphy and Tom Stanley, Program Chair.
 
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