“Officers, have a good night.”

David Murphy

In Memory of David F. Murphy

October 30, 1955 – June 16, 2007

David began his career at Williams College in 1984 as a security officer and was later promoted to department supervisor in the Campus Safety & Security Department.

Officers, have a good night. (audio)

David was a trusted friend and colleague. He touched the lives of many people and will be dearly missed. His strength and courage endured throughout his illness; he was an inspiration to all of us.

David enjoyed collecting coins and baseball cards. He was a fan of the Boston Red Sox and The Simpsons.  He named his pet beagle Homer.

David brought a wide range of experience to his supervisory position (see below). He used the knowledge gained from his military, police and security background to improve daily operations and performance standards.

He had a wonderful sense of humor and dry wit.  His timing was perfect and he knew just the right moment to make you laugh.

David could always be reached by radio as “Unit 5.” The department has respectfully retired “Unit 5” from their call rotation.

David never left for home without sending a final message to the officers on duty.  His words, “Officers, have a good night,” will always have a special place in our hearts.  It remains part of his legacy.

Jean Thorndike
Director of Campus Safety Services


David F. Murphy

Educational/ professional background

  • Former U.S. Air Force Security Policeman, Federal Police Officer, Town of Cheshire, MA Police Officer
  • Completion of the State Basic Course for Reserve Police Officers, Suicide Prevention Course, Specialized School for Crime Prevention
  • Completion of Northeast Security Officers Academy, Basic Bike Patrol Program, Security Police Technical School
  • Naval Education and Training Center Police Academy, FBI Anti-Weapons and Survival School, courses in Criminalistics, Constitutional Law, and Advanced Driving for Police Officers
  • 14 years at Williams

From an interview

What do you like most about working with Security?

The positive contacts with the community and working with the finest group of professionals in the college security field.

What made you want to work for Williams Security?
The working environment, the absence of the “We against Them” atmosphere between our Department and the community.

Favorite Sport?

Favorite books and movies?

  • Books: The Choirboy, The Bible, Handyman Magazine
  • Movies: Rainman, Young Frankenstein, King of Kings

Coin, Stamp and Baseball Card collecting, antiques

What is the funniest thing that’s ever happened to you on the job?
I have the tendency, with the assistance of certain partners of mine, to laugh to the point of tears, for no apparent reason, during events such as staff meetings.  The more I think about being serious, the more I laugh.

What one piece of advice would you give to all incoming students?
For your safety and protection, be alert and aware and take the actions needed to reduce opportunity.