Rockaway, N.J. — John Murphy, a veteran of the carded packaging industry, died Nov. 15, with his family by his side. He was 74.
He was described by colleagues as an icon in the industry.
Born and raised in Philadelphia, Murphy spent eight years in the armed forces. After leaving the military, he worked for five years as a production manager at Polytherm Kassel in Ramsey, N.J.
Murphy began his long career in packaging on the machinery side, working in sales at Sencorp Systems Inc. in Hyannis, Mass., on Cape Cod. Sencorp makes thermoforming machinery, and equipment for blister packaging and sealing. It was the early 1970s, a time of big developments and growth in carded blister packaging.
The self-taught engineer excelled at problem solving in machinery and production.
Murphy went to work in sales for Jay Printing of Warwick, R.I., a printer and thin-gauge vacuum former of blister cards for the retail carded industry. He honed his knowledge during eight years at Jay.
In 1985, he joined the fledgling Package Development Co. Inc. of Rockaway, N.J., a move that “took a tremendous amount of persuasion” to convince him to make, according to Charles Schwester, president of Package Development.
Murphy spent the rest of his career at Package Development as vice president of sales and marketing. He retired from the company that does custom thermoforming and packaging.
“John's extensive machinery and consumer market knowledge greatly contributed to Package Development's success,” Schwester said. “Thank you John, you will be sorely missed for your knowledge, dedication and humor.”
He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Janet, his daughter, also named Janet, his son Scott and three grandchildren.