Non-Profit Internet Source for News, Events, History, & Culture of Northern Frederick & Carroll County Md./Southern Adams County Pa.


Thurmont Police raising funds for fellow officer

Chris Patterson

(5/3) Just over three weeks ago Officer William Murray of the Thurmont Police Department was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia and airlifted the same day to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore without time to even adjust to the idea.

It was a day like any other day, and just three weeks before he was to marry his fiancé, Molly Mason. Mason, 29, and Murray, 28, have postponed their wedding because they want to wait until he no longer has to wear a surgical mask in public, Mason said.

For now, though discharged last weekend, Murray will have to live within one hour of Johns Hopkins and return every day for treatments, even on weekends. And he wears a mask when out of the hospital because his immune system is so weakened from the chemotherapy.

Mason said Murray used to run five miles without trouble, but in January he caught a cold or flu and everything changed. Despite treatment with antibiotics, Murray got winded walking 100 yards and he was always very tired. That’s when he went to his doctor and found out about the leukemia, she said.

For now, Murray is doing okay despite the chemotherapy, Mason said. “He’s being very strong. He’s accepted it now. He just wants to do whatever he needs to do to get better,” she said.

Thurmont Police Officer William Murray has been diagnosed with leukemia and is receiving treatment in Baltimore. He is seen here (standing, center, in uniform with sunglasses on his head) during the 2006 National Night Out, six months before being diagnosed with leukemia, with some of his fellow police officers.

And they are grateful for the love and support they have received from everyone.

The couple is currently staying in a hotel, but will soon move into a Baltimore apartment donated by Thurmont residents John and Karen Kinnaird. John Kinnaird said his wife’s family owns the apartment in a nice part of town and wanted to help.

“We’re only doing it because we want the guy to get better and have less of an expense while he’s doing it,” Kinnaird said, tossing away credit for the donation.

Fellow officers Lieutenant Shawn Tyler and Sergeant Mike Figgins have opened an account at F & M Bank in Thurmont (called the William Murray Fund) to raise money for medical and other costs associated with Murray’s treatment and recovery.

“We are soliciting donations from anyone and everyone that can be sent care of the police to assist with medical bills, the cost associate with travel” and more, Tyler said.

A friend of the family got the couple some furniture for the apartment in Baltimore. Co-workers have donated gas cards and other things because Mason has been driving back and forth to Johns Hopkins, she said.

Thurmont resident and Catoctin Colorfest President Beverly Zienda announced recently at a town meeting that Colorfest donated $300 in gas cards to the couple.

“We wanted to do something for his fiancé because running back and forth to Baltimore is very expensive,” Zienda said.

Mason said she and Murray find it hard to believe so many people are doing so much for them.

“I can’t even say enough. It’s so generous…” she said. “We couldn’t ask for him (Murray) to work in a better town, be in better place or with better people. They are all so kind. They couldn’t do any more, Mason said.

Read other news articles on Thurmont