By Paul Gable
Born and raised in downtown Loris, Jim Murph decided to join the military before graduating from high school.
“I believed the service would help me mature by learning to be out on my own,” Murph said.
He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1962, immediately after graduation. Sent to Lackland A.F.B. in Texas for basic training, he remained there to receive training as an Air Policeman.
“I was fully qualified to be an aerial photographer, but the Air Force thought I should be in law enforcement,” Murph said.
After completing his training, Murph was sent to Kadena A.F.B. in Okinawa for two years.
Kadena is the largest U.S. air base in the Pacific and serves as the hub of air force operations in that area.
“I received a top secret security clearance and served on a security team on the base,” said Murph. “I can’t talk anymore about what I did.”
After completing his tour at Kadena, he was transferred to Andrews A.F.B. in Maryland where he continued the same type of duties.
Married to wife, Jenny, in May 1965, the couple returned to Loris after Murph was discharged in 1966.
He spent 15 years in the farm and industrial equipment business before opening Gold Key Realty in North Myrtle Beach in 1981.
A strong believer in giving back to the community, Murph has been a Lion’s Club member for 33 years and is also a founding member of the North Myrtle Beach Optimist Club.
“People give back to the community in different ways,” he said. “I believe in helping those who because of circumstances beyond their control can’t help themselves.”
An avid outdoor sportsman, Murph is also a member of Ducks Unlimited, on the Board of Directors of the East Coast Hunter’s Association and a charter member of the Loris Wildlife Action Committee.
“I have hunted for 62 of my 65 years without a flagrant violation of game laws or trespassing on other people’s property,” Murph said.
President of the Olyphic Hunting Club in Columbus County, N.C., Murph also included his outdoors avocation into a business opportunity in the 1970′s.
“We established a commercial dove hunting operation where hunters would come in for day hunts,” he said. “In addition to the hunts, we provided housing at the Sheraton for those who stayed longer than one day, charter boat fishing, golf and even shopping trips for the wives who came along.”
Through the years, Murph has followed a common sense philosophy toward life.
“Life is about people getting along, helping others and respecting others,” he said. “I have always tried to respect God, country, family, my fellow man, the law and the game I hunt.”