Eric “Murrdawg” Murray with umpires Edwin Moscoso, Edwin Jimenez, Chris Guccione and David Rackley before a Cleveland Guardians game. 

Murrdawg served eight years in the Marines and then 12 in the Army.

He was deployed from Fort Hood (now known as Fort Cavazos), Texas, to Iraq in December 2005. Nine months later, he was sent out on a patrol with 16 soldiers and four vehicles to investigate a vehicle-borne IED.

A bomb was detonated.

He coded. He was pronounced dead — three different times.

Once he retired from the Army, Eric assisted with his youngest son’s baseball team. One day, after an argument with the head coach, another parent told him he would make a good umpire.

He joined the Wounded Warrior Umpire Academy, which trains wounded veterans to become umpires, and in 2020, he graduated from the Wendelstedt Umpire School

UMPS CARE teamed up with the Cleveland Guardians over Memorial Day weekend to honor Eric, whose goal is to visit every MLB ballpark.

From Memorial Day through the Fourth of July, UMPS CARE Charities salutes the service of men and women like Eric Murray.  Donations made through our Stars and Strikes campaign make these special, on-field meet and greets possible.