- Archbishop Murphy was born October 3, 1932 in Chicago, IL.
- He graduated from Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary School of Chicago, IL in June of 1951.
- He was ordained by Samuel Cardinal Stritch, Archbishop of Chicago, to the Holy Priesthood on April 12, 1958 at the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception in Mudelein, IL.
- He was appointed by John Cardinal Cody, Archbishop of Chicago, as the fifth Rector of St. Mary of the Lake Seminary (the major seminary of the Archdiocese of Chicago) from 1973-1978.
- Pope Paul VI appoints the Very Reverend Thomas Murphy to be the fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Great Falls, MT on July 5, 1978.
- He was installed by the Most Reverend Cornelius M. Power, Archbishop of Portland and Archbishop Jean Jadot, Apostolic Delegate to the United States, as the fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Great Falls, MT on August 21, 1978.
- Pope John Paul II appoints Bishop Murphy as the Coadjutor Archbishop of Seattle on May 26, 1987
- He was installed as the third Archbishop of Seattle on August 21, 1991.
Archbishop Murphy died on June 26, 1997. His mortal remains are entombed in the Episcopal Crypt beneath the main altar in St. James Cathedral in Seattle, WA.