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Mary Murphy was born in Queens, New York and has spent her entire broadcasting career in her hometown. During her time at PIX11, Mary has anchored coverage of the 9/11 terror attacks, reported “live” during Superstorm Sandy, and did “live” coverage from Vatican City, when Pope Francis was elected in 2013. That’s the same year that Mary launched her “Mary Murphy Mystery” segment, which looks at unsolved crimes and missing persons cases. She’s also a member of the PIX11 Investigates unit. Her work in television journalism has been honored with 25 Emmy awards, along with an Edward R. Murrow for writing, and many, first-place prizes from the Associated Press Broadcasters’ Association. She won her most recent Emmy for a six-part series called “Heroin, A to Z.”

Mary is the daughter of Irish immigrants; her mother, Mary, is from County Galway and her late father, James, hailed from County Mayo. Her parents met in Rockaway Beach and initially settled in Woodside. Mary’s father was a New York City bus driver. Mary graduated from Queens College, Magna Cum Laude, and was selected for an internship with WCBS TV in the 1980’s. That was Mary’s entry into the news business, and she never looked back.

Mary has worked at PIX11 during two, different phases of her career. She spent five years here in the 1980’s, working her way up from production assistant to reporter.
During this initial phase at PIX11, Mary produced some of the first, local TV stories on the AIDS crisis and was out on the streets covering the violence associated with the crack cocaine epidemic.

In 1986, CBS 2 hired Mary as a general assignment correspondent. She covered breaking news there for seven years, including months of coverage associated with the assassination of NYPD Officer, Edward Byrne. Mary was the first, New York television reporter to air the confession tapes of the suspects. She reported “live” during the truck bombing of One World Trade Center in 1993. She won Emmy awards at CBS 2 for reporting on the John Gotti and Joel Steinberg trials.

Mary returned to PIX11 in 1993, where she was given opportunities to anchor, produce documentaries, and continue to break stories. In 1994, she interviewed the real people behind the Oscar-winning film, “Schindler’s List.” The project was honored with a national award from the American Women in Radio and Television.

In 1995, while six months pregnant, Mary covered the visit of Pope John Paul II (now a saint!) to New Jersey and New York. John Paul tapped Mary’s PIX 11 microphone, when she asked him a question, and that’s a special memory. She covered his Mass at Giants Stadium in the pouring rain!

In 1996, Mary responded to the crash of TWA Flight 800, off Center Moriches, Long Island. 230 passengers and crew members bound for Paris from JFK perished. For years, there was intense debate about the cause. In July 2001, Mary was the lead reporter on the Emmy-winning newscast that marked the fifth anniversary of the disaster.

In 2006, shortly before the fifth anniversary of 9/11, Mary visited a field in County Cork, Ireland, where a New York-based nurse had planted 343 trees in honor of the firefighters who gave their lives responding to the September 11th terror attacks.

On Sunday, May 1st, 2011, Mary was in her pajamas on a Sunday night, when she received an e-mail that President Obama was going to announce the death of the “Most Wanted” terrorist in the world, Osama bin Laden. Mary quickly changed, went into work, and landed on the lawn of retired firefighter, Bob Beckwith, at 4:30 am. Beckwith had stood with then-President George W. Bush on top of a demolished fire truck, three days after 9/11, when the President declared the terrorists who knocked down the towers would be hearing from the United States very soon. Weeks later, our War on Terror was launched in Afghanistan.

In early 2012, Mary traveled to Rome with Dan Mannarino to cover the elevation of New York’s Archbishop, Timothy Michael Dolan, to Cardinal. They worked many long hours, but it was an incredible venue to be working from.

Never in their wildest dreams did Dan and Mary think they’d be returning to Rome the next year, 2013, when Pope Benedict XVI surprisingly resigned—and a new leader of the Catholic Church was about to be selected. Mary and Dan were in St. Peter’s Square on March 13, 2013, when the white smoke signaled that a new Pope had been elected in the Sistine Chapel. That was Francis.

In November 2014, Mary produced a six-part series called “Heroin, A to Z” that looked at the explosion of heroin use—and fatalities—among young people in the middle class. At one point, she reunited a Suffolk County police officer with a 21 year old woman he had saved twice from an overdose, in the same month. The woman was then clean a year and working full time.

Mary was thrilled on January 25, 2015, when she received an e-mail about one of her Mystery segments from the year before. The e-mail led to an emotionally powerful reunion between a biological mother—and the child she had left behind in Brooklyn 38 years before.

Outside of work, Mary’s passions are movies—and tennis. She plays ladies’ doubles, and her community team has won four, first place championships, since they started playing together in 2006.

Mary is grateful for the opportunities journalism has brought her to see the world. And she identifies with so many people who, like her, came from ordinary backgrounds—but witnessed extraordinary things.

Recent Articles
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    STATEN ISLAND — Matthew Pinto’s 24-year-old sister overdosed on Monday, the second time since she returned from a three month rehab stay in Florida. Pinto immediately called PIX11 because we’d  been trying for three weeks to find the elderly doctor who was writing the young woman’s prescriptions for powerful opioid Oxycodone and other controlled drugs. We finally found 79-year-old psychiatrist, Anthony Pietropinto on Monday evening as he walked — stooped and slowly — to his new business address on Lafayette […]

  • From Hollywood to the Vatican, child porn cases impact every sector of society

    Dr. NG Berrill, a psychologist who runs New York Forensic, said he talks to 200 sex offenders every year. A lot of them were busted for viewing child porn. “We’ve seen through this practice law enforcement, attorneys, physicians, educators, clergyman and people who you think would know better,” Dr. Berrill told PIX11. “There’s something compulsive about the looking at the pornography, that’s clear.” “There is no, sole profile,” said Michael Osborn, Assistant Special Agent in Charge at the New York […]

  • From Happy Meals to day care, cocaine still finds its way to users, feds say

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  • Authorities seek to unravel why Stephen Paddock unleashed mass murder in Las Vegas

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  • $3 million dollar ‘Deer Vasectomy’ plan may not contain population

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    MILLER PLACE, NY — Attorney John Ray brought PIX11 to a row of large storage sheds in the back lot of his law office in Miller Place, Long Island. He showed us stacks of boxes with legal files. “About 30 of these have to do with Gilgo and Shannan Gilbert,” Ray told PIX11 Ray was retained more than six years ago by the family of Shannan Gilbert, an escort who was missing for a year and a half before her […]

  • Teen accused of shooting Yonkers officer got probation last week on gun charge

    THE BRONX — While Yonkers Police Officer Kayla Maher recovered from a bullet to the face, PIX11 News learned on Tuesday that one of the teenagers charged in the shooting, and who was shot himself in the exchange, had been released by a Bronx judge last week in another weapons case that involved a semi-automatic gun, hundreds of rounds of ammunition and a machete. Frank Valencia, 18, of New Rochelle, received probation and youthful offender status when he was sentenced […]

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  • Bus company in deadly Queens crash has history of speeding violations

    FLUSHING, Queens — Dahlia Travel and Tours, also known as the Dahlia Group, had at least two fatal bus crashes in its background — and a history of speeding violations — before its driver smashed into a Q20 bus Monday morning in Flushing. Three people were killed, including the Dahlia driver, and more than a dozen others injured, some critically. The driver was identified by police as Raymond Mong, 49, of Queens. A source told PIX11 News he was fired […]

  • NYPD doctor recalls wounded cops — and Louima crisis — in new book

    LONG ISLAND — Dr. Gregory Fried was a young resident in the Bellevue Hospital emergency room on January 27, 1972, when he got word about two officers ambushed in the East Village. One of them, Officer Gregory Foster, died at the scene on East 11th Street, by Avenue B. His partner, Officer Rocco Laurie, was rushed to Bellevue. “Laurie died in the operating room; he bled to death,” Dr. Fried, now 71, recalled recently. “At that time, the Lower East […]