US Army

Murray Harris

April 22, 1925 ~ April 8, 2020 (age 94)


Doctor Murray Thomas Harris was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on April 22, 1925 to Harry and Myrtle Harris.  He died in Edison, New Jersey on April 8, 2020 at the age of 94.  Murray lived in Philadelphia as a child.  He had one younger brother, Benjamin.  The family moved to Tuckerton, New Jersey when he was about 15.  There he met, and later married, Jean Shropshire of New Gretna, New Jersey.  He graduated from Tuckerton High School in 1943.  Murray was a veteran of World War II, doing tours with the United States Army in Europe and later in the Philippines.  After the war, the couple were married, in December 1946.  They had no children.  

Murray graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Rutgers University and later received a Doctorate in Chemistry from Rutgers as well.  Murray was employed as a Research Chemist by Bell Telephone Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey, and was involved in the research that led to invention of the computer, among other things.  He later became Associate Professor of Chemistry at William Patterson State College in Wayne, New Jersey. He retired at the age of 50 and spent many years traveling around the world and the country.  He and Jean enjoyed camping, hiking, and sailing, among other pursuits.

After the deaths of Jean’s parents, the couple made their home in the Shropshire homestead on North Maple Avenue in New Gretna from 1976 to 2008, where they were actively involved in the New Gretna Presbyterian Church choir, and The Old Home Society.  They spent a number of years researching and writing genealogy books about the Shropshire, Mathis and Cramer families. In 2008, the couple moved to the Senior Living Center at Seabrook in Clinton Falls, New Jersey where Murray spent his time volunteering in plays, discussion groups and anything that involved music.  Murray loved to sing and to lead singing groups.  He could play the harmonica, recorder, piano, violin and was taking cello lessons in his 80s.

Murray was predeceased by his parents and younger brother.  He leaves behind his beloved wife of 73 years, Jean Shropshire Harris, who remains in Seabrook.  Other family include his brother-in-law Joseph Ashbrook Shropshire of Westfield, New Jersey, his brother-in-law Lewis Barnett Shropshire and his wife, Ruth, of Galax, Virginia, his sister-in-law Mildred Shropshire Felsberg of Galloway, New Jersey, his sister-in-law Alice Shropshire Mathis and her husband, Sylvester, of St

Petersburg, Florida, and as well as many nieces and nephews, other in-laws and long-time-friends, who remember him fondly. 

Due to the current Covid-19 pandemic burial in Miller Cemetery, New Gretna will be private.

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