Murtland McPherson, Pierre Hotel

The Union mourns the passing of our brother Murtland McPherson, a laundry attendant for 29 years at the Pierre Hotel. He was 71.

Pierre Delegate Willie Joseph recalled that Murtland was your typical nice guy. “He was just always eager to lend a hand; never thought of himself. I’m going to really miss him.”

“As soon as you saw that big smile, you knew it was Murtland,” explained Beverly Footman, another coworker of Murtland’s at the Pierre for many years. “He was always smiling, happy and friendly… he was just a big, cuddly Teddy bear of a man,” she added. “Murtland was also a very hard worker, and was always on time. He was never once late for work. And we had a running joke, too. He had 10 daughters and I always asked him about his ‘cheerleading team.’” Beverly also noted that Murtland just recently finished building his ‘dream retirement house’ in his native Guyana. “He worked many years to build that house, and he was going to move back soon, but now he’s gone and he will not get to enjoy it. It is so sad.”

Kettie Joseph, who began working at the Pierre in 1995 when she first met Murtland, remembers him as a wonderful man who immediately took her under his wing and showed her the ropes. “Murtland became a dear friend of mind, I can even say he because like a distant family member. We grew a friendship that lasted 24 years and I’m saddened it won’t be longer. We began commuting to and from work together and he would always make sure I was okay. Even when our work career ended, Murtland and I continued our friendship. Not only will I miss him but so will my family.” Kettie also recalls that Murtland was a terrific cook. “He always made sure to put my curry chicken aside. I will miss him saying ‘Miss Joseph, how you doing?,’ in his deep and rich Guyanese accent. He is truly missed and I still can’t believe he isn’t here and that he won’t be able to retire in the ‘oasis’ he was building.”

Murtland’s wife Rebecca of 24 years remembers her husband as “a nice, caring and loving person, who would be the first one to give you the shirt off his back.” “We met in Brooklyn over 30 years ago. He treated me so well, and he used to call me his ‘princess.’”

Murtland is survived by his wife, his 10 children, and his many close friends.