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March/April 2007
Voice of the People: Daniel Murphy
Hancock Mayor Daniel Murphy celebrates the joys of public service and small-town living.

• • •

Opportunities for service to others abound for those of us living in small communities. Like larger towns and cities, we have the same amount of work to accomplish — but we must do it with a smaller pool of available volunteers. And yet, it is the small-town lifestyle that brings a quality and balance to my life in my hometown of Hancock.

When I arrived in Hancock nearly 30 years ago as a young veterinarian, my wife and I chose to become involved in community causes and activities. Through church, Rotary, school, community action groups, Little League and so on, we soon became immersed in our town’s workings — all the while trying to establish a strong veterinary practice within our area. Through these commitments to service, we found our circle of friends, who have been with us all along the way. Busy people enjoy being around busy people — together, more can be accomplished through cooperation, support and commiseration.

Fourteen years ago, I added town government to the mix. As a councilman for four years and mayor for a decade, I have become intimately involved in every aspect of my hometown. Problems are brought forward to one in my position that are both challenging and stimulating.

As my children grew, I became more involved in community by way of the Historical Society, Arts Council and Chamber of Commerce — as well as myriad meetings at the town, county, state and federal levels, by virtue of my position as mayor. Throughout these times, the challenge to serve well as veterinarian, husband, father, mayor, teacher, preacher, counselor and friend remains the most important aspect of my being. For some, being overwhelmed means pulling back and dropping out; for me, this stimulation is the stress-buster that keeps me free of a mundane existence.

And so when people from other places sarcastically ask me, “What in the world do you do for fun in a place like Hancock?” I smile and am reminded that life is what you make it to be. As the stress of life in the 21st century continues to mount, having a hometown that is friendly, safe and enjoyable becomes one of the highest priorities. When I chose Hancock to be my hometown, I did so confidently, knowing she would serve my family well. I have no regrets.

Daniel Murphy, Hancock Mayor

Each issue, HM will feature commentary from a prominent member of our community.

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