George B. Murray, SJ, MD, who worked in the MGH Department of Psychiatry for nearly 40 years, died Nov. 18 at the age of 82. Murray is remembered by his colleagues as not only a gifted diagnostician but also an extraordinary teacher who left an indelible mark on the minds of more than 100 consultation psychiatry fellows.
“He delighted in the close mentorship he established with his trainees, although he never liked to show it,” says Greg Fricchione, MD, director of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at the MGH. “‘I am the kind of guy who can only show positive affection in its negative expression,’ he often explained with a nod. And all of his former fellows would go to great lengths to receive Dr. Murray’s special brand of approval.”
Murray was born in Minneapolis, Minn., in 1931. In 1953, he entered the Society of Jesus, a Roman Catholic religious order commonly known as the Jesuits, and was ordained a Catholic priest in 1965. Later, Murray attended John Carroll University. As a Jesuit, he received an undergraduate degree from Xavier University, followed by master’s degrees in philosophy and biology from St. Louis University, and a master’s in neurophysiology from the University of Montreal. He received his medical degree from Creighton University in 1972.
A year later, Murray joined the MGH as a resident. He served as chief resident of the Psychiatric Consultation Service before becoming director of the Psychosomatic Medicine Fellowship in 1978, where he worked until his 2011 retirement.
“MGH Psychiatry has lost a part of its modern history, the passing of an iconic member of our department whose presence for decades helped define who we are,” says Jerrold Rosenbaum, MD, chief of psychiatry. “George was in many ways, literally and figuratively, larger than life. He was a football player, a Jesuit, a jazz drummer, a neuroscientist, but foremost a consultation-liaison psychiatrist and a creator of consultation-liaison psychiatrists who all point to George’s teaching and training as the signature training experience of
Funeral services have been held.
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