The Murph Challenge 2016 @Crossfit Bastion-Huntington NY
You can hear the emotion in Bryan Kelly’s voice when he talks about the fundraiser Best Hot Tubs recently co-sponsored in honor of Smithtown-born, and Patchogue-raised, local hero Navy Lieutenant Michael Murphy.
“In 2005, Lt. Murphy, or ‘Murph’ as he was known to his friends and family, was 29 and a member of a four-man Navy SEALs unit tasked with a counter-insurgent mission in the Hindu Kush region of Afghanistan,” says Kelly.
“Poor communications systems, however, compounded problems for the team during a firefight with 50 anti-coalition militia, and Murphy volunteered, despite having already been shot in the hand, to go out into the open in order to get a better phone signal. He was again shot, this time in the back, but continued his attempt to communicate and firing at the enemy. Ultimately he managed to successfully alert the SEAL base of their desperate situation, request assistance and return to fight with his team, but he, and two more of his comrades, were later killed by the Taliban fighters.”
The Memorial Day “Murph Challenge” fundraiser, which is organized nationally by high-intensity CrossFit gyms, and, locally, by their Huntington affiliate CrossFit Bastion, is an annual event that raises funds for the LT. Michael P. Murphy Memorial Scholarship Foundation — a Foundation that is funded entirely through donations and the proceeds from the Challenge.
“The Crossfit Bastion Murph Challenge attracts workout enthusiasts who dare themselves to perform some of the endurance workouts performed by SEALs like Lt. Michael Murphy,” adds Kelly.
Participants face the following workout:
1 Mile Run
1 Mile Run.
…all performed in a 20-pound vest or body armor.
“Entrants from three different CrossFit affiliates took part in the Huntington workout challenge,” says Kelly. “At the event, Michael Murphy’s father spoke, there was a color guard of local Navy Cadets, and a young woman — Daniella Bivas — sang the National Anthem. Then the Challenge endurance began.
“The co-owners of CrossFit Bastion-Huntington, Dani Hodinott and Patrick McGovern, organized and led the event, as well as participated. It was an amazing day. Everyone at Best Hot Tubs showroom, including owner, Bill Renter, were enthusiastically behind making this a terrific event,” says Kelly.
The Murph Challenge is no easy feat and the Best Hot Tubs’ team felt that participants exerting themselves so strenuously and putting so much stress on their muscles would be grateful for a hot tub soak afterward.
“We brought one of our Bullfrog Spas’ top models to the gym for this purpose,” says Kelly. “Pictured here is one of the participants enjoying Bullfrog’s JetPak massage jets; also shown is CrossFit Bastion-Huntington co-owner, Dani Hodinott.”
This year’s Murph Challenge event at the Huntington gym raised over $10,000 for the scholarship fund.