One Life that Touched Many Others26 Sep 2014
Not everyone who knows of the Murthy Law Firm knows the other side of this world-renowned legal practice. We describe the law firm as the brain of our operation. It has been working hard for 20 years, filing cases for our clients, helping many immigrants to fulfill their American dreams, and building a reputation for excellence. But the other side, the heart of things, is the MurthyNAYAK Foundation, launched by Sheela Murthy and her husband Vasant Nayak in response to the 9/11 attacks on the United States.
Originally from India, the couple had naturalized by then and were U.S. citizens. They wanted to share the rewards for their hard work with those less fortunate in the land of their birth and that of their adopted homeland. Establishing a foundation seemed the logical course of action.
Sheela’s father always instilled in his daughters the responsibility they had toward others. He grew up quite poor, but worked hard and built a successful career in India’s army. It was an accident of birth, he said, that made them the daughters in his household, instead of the daughters to a poor family. These are words that Sheela took to heart, and she repeats them often. His influence on her was deep and profound.
In his retirement years, Col. Murthy got together with other military retirees on a regular basis. Seeing great need in their community, they began the Senior Citizens Association. They adopted the Chennakeshava School, which is attended by many of Bangalore’s poorest children. They instituted a breakfast program that serves 1200 children to make sure their school day is not begun on an empty stomach. The Senior Citizens also began an old age home to serve those who are elderly, poor, and alone.
Col. HMS Murthy left this world on September 25, 2014. While few at the Murthy Law Firm had the opportunity to meet him, he touched our lives because he touched Sheela, our founder and president. His loss is felt far from the land that was his home. Our hearts go out to his family, especially to his wife, his daughters, and his granddaughters.
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