Charlie Murphy’s death at the age of 57 on April 12 is not the first time his family has tragically lost someone to cancer.
Murphy’s wife, Tisha Taylor Murphy, died of cancer in 2009.
Here’s what you need to know about Tisha Taylor Murphy:
1. Charlie Took Tisha to His Brother’s House the Night They Met & He Said He Knew She Was His ‘Future Wife’
Charlie Murphy met Tisha Taylor on a boat while she was having dinner with friends. He told BlackDoctor.org it was love at first site:
For me, it was an instant. The first night I met Tisha was on a boat. She was having dinner with her friends. She didn’t know who I was, and I asked her to come with me. Her friends told her not to go. But she did.
Murphy said he brought Tisha to his brother’s house, where Eddie Murphy and other family members were.
“We drove straight to my brother’s house,” he told BlackDoctor.org. “My mother was there. My stepfather was there. Eddie was there. They were all in the kitchen. I walked in and said, ‘This is my future wife.'”
Read more about Charlie Murphy in Spanish at AhoraMismo.com:
2. The Couple Married in August 1997 & They Just ‘Fit’ Together Perfectly, Murphy Said
The couple married in August 1997.
Murphy told BlackDoctor.org that his relationship with Tisha was special, it worked perfectly.
“We fit,” Murphy said. “I don’t believe that you can meet another person that fits just like that. She wasn’t even another person. She’s a mirror, you know what I mean. It was like that for twenty years.”
He told journalist Tim Teeman during a 2012 interview that he wasn’t able to tell his wife everything he would have liked to before she died.
“No. I didn’t say I’m sorry,” he said. “Anybody you have a relationship with for 17 years…there are things you say you don’t mean. Losing someone makes you realize life is not long enough to be mad at somebody.”
3. They Had 2 Children Together, a Son & a Daughter
Charlie and Tisha Murphy had two children together, a son and a daughter.
Xavier, their son, is now 18. Their daughter, Eva, is 11. Charlie Murphy also has a son from a previous relationship, who is 31.
Tisha Murphy’s death greatly impacted the family.
“I’m not okay; you’re never really okay you just learn to live with it. That’s something monumental, losing somebody that close in your life,” Charlie Murphy told Vibe in 2010. “It happened to my children, and me you don’t get used to and you don’t get over it.”
Murphy’s son, Xavier, was the same age he was when he lost his own father, Murphy told interviewer Tim Teeman in 2012.
“It’s horrible, but I was able to tell him: ‘I went through what you’re going through,'” Murphy said.
He told BlackDoctor.org that her death helped him realize you need to live life to the fullest, a lesson he passed on to his children.
“I believe everyone has a gift, an ability,” he said. “Something that you actually realize and start to hone. There are people who are acknowledged as the top electrician. The top dentist. The number-one brain surgeon. There are people who’ve become millionaires from plumbing.”
4. She Battled Cancer for 2 Years & Died in Her Sleep at the Couple’s New Jersey Home in December 2009
Tisha Murphy battled cervical cancer for two years. Charlie Murphy in an interview with BlackDoctor.org her diagnosis was a shock to their family:
I came home and she’s in the kids’ room, crying. That’s when she told me. Cervical cancer. You don’t really grasp it. When the person tells you they’re going to die, you go crazy. You become a different person from the moment you hear those words. A young woman like that — don’t drink, don’t smoke, don’t do drugs. I know people that’s ninety who do all of that.
She died in her sleep on December 14, 2009, at their home in New Jersey at the age of 40, according to MTV.
“Tisha Taylor Murphy, wife of comedian and actor Charlie Murphy, passed away peacefully on Sunday with family at her side after facing the challenges of cancer for the past two years,” Murphy’s publicist, Lyndsey Jacobs, said in a statement to MTV at the time. “The Murphy Family appreciates all of the support they have received from friends and fans and requests privacy during this very difficult time.”
Murphy told BlackDoctor.org, “She’s a very organized woman. When she died, all the arrangements had been made. She made her own arrangements.”
5. Charlie Murphy Said After Her Death That He Was Trying to Be Around His Kids as Much as Possible
Charlie Murphy said during an interview with Hot 103 after his wife’s death that he was trying to spend as much time as possible with his two children, who were 11 and 4 at time their mother died.
“I’m trying to stay around, be around as much as possible,” Murphy said. “I have a nanny, but the nanny is not mommy. … Daddy has to be there. I show up for my kids and my kids see me as much as I possibly can. Every morning, every night. I’ll cook for them myself. I don’t pay somebody else to do that. I’m aware of the fact that one day they are going to grow up and remember all these times.”
He told Vibe that he realized he had to be there for his kids despite the pain he was feeling himself:
I have responsibilities as a man to other people—I have children. Okay, you can be hurt but you’ve still have to do what you’ve got to do and take care of your responsibilities. I didn’t have a luxury of taking a year off. I’ve been baking this [career] cake for a minute and taking a year off will really cool it off a lot. So I couldn’t do that, I had to follow thru with what I’m doing [my work.] And now I’ve been blessed with the ability to do it and God has been working with me and family. Has it been a baby’s ride? No, but we’re okay. As a man, if you lose your wife it’s a horrible experience especially with kids. But when one person passes away and you’re still alive, people still depend on you—that’s what you have to lean on.
Murphy said he did start dating after his wife’s death, but it is not known if he had been in a relationship recently.
“The kids want me to get married, but I don’t want to bring someone home and it not work out,” he told Tim Teeman in 2012. “I’ll always be grieving for my wife but she said: ‘Go on with your life. Find somebody that can make you happy.’”