Wellington Elementary Students Honor Four-Legged Friend


Murphy, a beloved golden retriever owned by Nancy and Ernie Bentley, provided 11 years of dedicated volunteer service as a P.A.W.S. volunteer for Active Re-Entry. Murphy spent countless hours at Price City Library, Wellington Elementary, local care facilities and with Emery County Elementary students in many capacities.

On Tuesday, Mrs. Montoya’s second grade class at Wellington Elementary honored Murphy with a Christmas tree dedicated to his life and service. On the tree, photos of Murphy’s visits to the school throughout 11 years are displayed. Students also created ornaments reflecting what Murphy taught them with his friendship.

“He’s helped many children with lots of lessons,” Montoya explained.

Nancy was in attendance to view the tree that students had assembled. She explained that even when Murphy was deaf, blind and plagued with a slew of health issues, he still loved to come visit the children at Wellington Elementary.

“When I heard what they had done with the tree, I thought ‘Wow. That is just so cool,'” Nancy said.

After the students enjoy the tree at Wellington Elementary, it will be relocated to Active Re-Entry where Murphy served many years. He earned many awards for his service to the community. In 2004, he received Price City recognition for dedication to the community. Also, in 2006, he was the National Therapy Dog of the Year, winning the Gold Standard Award by the Golden Retriever Club of America for “acts that enriched, inspired and contributed to the lives of individuals and communities.”

Nancy and Ernie enjoyed Murphy for 11 years before he passed away on Oct. 3. “You stole our hearts with your smile and all we can say is thank you,” the pair commented.


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