An Anderson High School teacher created a lasting impact on his students’ in under one school year of teaching American Sign Language.
Roscoe “Rocky” Murray, who had been deaf, died Monday afternoon in a wreck on Interstate 69 near exit 222.
Murray was accelerating onto the interstate his way home to Fishers later college. Troopers believe Murray didn’t realize traffic on the highway’s southbound lanes had ceased due to a construction zone.
Murray’s CRV ran into the rear of a vacant semi tanker stopped from the street. The crash closed the southbound lanes for nearly three hours. Murray was transported to St. Vincent Hospital at Anderson and died from his injuries. The driver of the semi suffered minor injuries.
Murray had just left Anderson High School, where been teaching ASL because last fall.
“I will absolutely miss his humor, his smile and the fact that he cared so much about the people around him,” said Angela V. Farrand through an ASL interpreter.
Farrand is also deaf and educated ASL alongside Murray at Anderson High School.
“He was simply a wonderful dad, husband, teacher… wow.”
Anderson has approximately 300 pupils taking ASL classes, which is offered as a world language. Senior Madi Webb served as a teaching assistant for Murray. She is going to college next fall to become an ASL interpreter.
“Rocky was not only my instructor, he was my mentor and he was my friend,” said Webb. “I’ll miss him a lot.”
Three of Murray’s four children came to Anderson High School Thursday to collect a few of their father’s personal belongings from his classroom. Attached to the white board at the room they saw a massive banner full of personal messages from students concerning the effect Murray made in just one school year.
“I only knew him as a father and clearly he had been a teacher to me,” said 17-year-old Ashlanna Murray. “I never realized that his impact on his students until so many of them were reaching out to me”
Students loved Murray’s positive outlook and hearing about his life experiences as dea deafan, including being a two-time bronze medalist in handball in the Deaf Olympics.
“We went through a few years where it was sort of hard on us because he didn’t have a steady job,” stated 19-year-old Ashton Murray, Rocky’s son. “Therefore, when he arrived I think he really made the most of it got really concerned. He seemed really happy the past few months.”
“It was like a burden had raised here,” stated 23-year-old Ashley Wright, Rocky’s stepdaughter. “We know that he loved working here”
Several staff and students will attend Friday’s providers in Brandywine Community Church, 1551 E. New Rd., Greenfield. The funeral follows at 1:00 p.m.
LUNA Language Services supplied ASL interpretation for our interviews for this story and will provide the same for Friday’s services at no charge to the Murray family.
A GoFundMe account was set up by the Anderson High School ASL Club as the Rocky Murray Memorial Fund.