Born Eunice Marjorie Joerndt.
Date of birth : March 3, 1902, Chicago, Illinois.Date of death : March 5, 1994, Tucson, Arizona.
Places of living :
1947 : 902 Franklin Street, Brentwood with her husband.
1950 : 431 West Rustic Canyon Road, Santa Monica Canyon
1962 : 933 Ocean Avenue, Appt 11, Santa Monica.
Practise: Marilyn's housekeeper for the last 9 months of the actress life.
She was the last daughter of a 6 children family, whise last one had died aged 3.Her parents, Wilhelm Joerndt et Mary Miller, were fervent Jehovah's witnesses.
The family left to Ohio, where she attended the grammar-school of the village, ran by some Swedenborgian sect disciples.
In 1917, aged 15, she attended the Swedenborgian Urbana School and Academy where her sister Carolyn, 4 years elder than her, was a boarder.
Recently settled in Los Angeles, the parents
learned that Carolyn had contracted the Spanish flu and that a
doctor had been called.
Angry that the religious proscriptions about the medical care had been broken, the Joerndt legally disowned their daughter Carolyn, who, to them, didn't exist anymore. When the school learned about it, a tutor of the institution took care of Carolyn for a while.
Eunice escaped the flu and so the family abandonment. She loved her sister to who she considered herself as a pale reflection.
She was deeply affected by her parents violent reaction, and since this time, began to suffer from emotional disorders, mainly an inability to differentiate herself from her sister, as from her other friends, and a panic-fear of abandonment.She left school in this year of 1918, before her 16th birthday, apparently because of her psychological and emotional fragility.
In 1918, on the school records, Eunice was domiciled in Los Angeles and Carolyn in Chicago.
The 2 sisters close complicity lasted and at the beginning of 1924, they announced at the same time, their engagement.Grateful to the institution kindliness and faithful to the Swedenborgian principles, Carolyn married Franklin Blackmer, an eminent priest of the sect who ran for 6 years the Urbana high School. She also taught there from 1921 until her wedding, and continued to exercise a great influence until her death in 1972, despite her husband's death.
In 1929, she opened a small nursery in Urbana, a testimony of her love for children and her passion for a precocious and well-understood education.
OnMarch 3, 1924 Eunice married John Murray, ex-serviceman, carpenter and son of a Swedenborgian Minister.
John who wanted to become a priest, attended the Yale Divinity School, but he left the seminary to come back to his first love, the carpentry.
They had 3 daughters : Marilyn (born in 1924), and the twins Patricia (who would marry Norman Jefferies) and Jacqueline (born in 1926).
Having left school early, Eunice couldn't devote herself to teaching, but she continued to love and imitate her sister insomuch to define herself as "nursery nurse" or more simply "nurse", an identity she persisted in using it in Los Angeles, where this profession appeared in the phone book under her name.
Without any other skills than her experience as a mother, Eunice admired and idolized through her whole life her sister Carolyn and her brother-in-law, Franklin Blackmer.
In the 30's and 40's,
John Murray criss-crossed the USA, went as far as Mexico, organized the
carpenters trade unions and left Eunice raising their 3 children. They
lived in different houses in Los Angeles, and during the Second World
War (John was too old to be called up), they lived in Santa Monica
while their house on Franklin Street was being built, a plan they
supported for years.
In the 30's and 40's, John Murray criss-crossed the USA, went as far as Mexico, organized the carpenters trade unions and left Eunice raising their 3 children. They lived in different houses in Los Angeles, and during the Second World War (John was too old to be called up), they lived in Santa Monica while their house on Franklin Street was being built, a plan they supported for years.
John Murray belonged to the Arts, Sciences and Professions Council.
He had a brother, Churchill Murray; this one ran a radio station in Mexico; he had many political contacts, notably within the Cuban and Soviet Embassies.
The construction of their Colonial-styled house located 902 Franklin Street, in Santa Monica, was completed in 1946. Four months after their moving in (going through a serious conjugal crisis), they couldn't afford anymore the drafts and put their house up for sale.
John was an absent father and husband, and Eunice hadn't have enough money to repay the loan.Dr Greenson purchased it in 1947 for the amount of 16 500$.
She wandered, penniless, solitary and aimless : her job beside Greenson saved her.
Eunice and her husband separated from each other shortly after the house sale and divorced in 1950.
Eunice lived it as a failure, a serious sinning to the principles instilled by her Swedenborgian education.
John Murray re married, settled in Texas, then in New Mexico, and died in 1958.
Sentimentally very attached to her house, Eunice kept friendly relationships with the Greensons and even askedsome work to the psychiatrist.
He immediately hired her and placed her to his
most important patients where she was kind of a guardian, companion and
mother hen, a role for which she hadn't any skills and experience.
He obtained her some work to his most famous patients. Conscientiously, as Greenson demanded it, she reported the slightest actions and gestures of his clients.
In hisautobiography, she said that Greenson sent her to people "seriously ill, suffering from depression or schizophrenia, or to others, like Marilyn, who had suffered from traumatic experiences and only needed help".
The most widespread opinion is that Eunice spied on Marilyn on Dr Greenson's behalf : she reported him everythings she saw or heard at his patients home.*
According to Philippe Laclair, Eunice's son-in-law : " She did that for money. Her situation was hard after her husband's leaving - she hadn't nor nurse training neither had studied at the university - but she was nice and became a major asset for Greenson. She had always faithfully followed his orders".
In November 1961, on Greenson's recommendation, Marilyn hired her : she used her as a housekeeper, a female companion, driver, nurse and intendant; Marilyn lived at that time at Doheny Drive.
She went with Marilyn in Mexico. She took advantage to visit her
brother-in-law, Churchill Murray, who lived in Mexico City.
In February 1962, she found the house of 5th Helena Drive for Marilyn, and continued to be her housekeeper. Marilyn purchased this house because it looked like Dr Greenson Spanish-styled house.
Back from Mexico, Marilyn lived for a week at the Greensons home, waiting for her house to be ready.
In May 1962 Marilyn's circle was relieved to learn that, Greenson being travelling for 5 weeks, Marilyn dismissed Eunice. But back from New York, where she had sung for John Kennedy at the Madison Square Garden, Marilyn found Eunice at home.
This one claimed that her dismissal wasn't definite, but only for Marilyn's stay in New York.
She had planned to travel to Europe since August 6, 1962, with her sister and her brother-in-law; she would have told Marilyn on August 1, in the aftermath, Marilyn would have given her a check, asking her not to come
According several biographies, Marilyn had already contacted one of her former employees (Hattie Stevenson or Florence Thomas according the sources) to replace Eunice Murray.
Marilyn's friends considered Eunice's leaving as a positive fact (the evidence that Marilyn wanted to lead her life on herself) and as the first sign of her detachment from Greenson.
On August 4, 1962, Eunice reported for duty at 8.00 AM. No biographer contests the fact that she remained with Marilyn during the whole day, and that, curiously, she spent the night in Marilyn's house rather than going back home, in Santa Monica.
During the whole day, she took the phone calls during Marilyn's psychoanalysis sessions with Greenson, at her home.
There are many contradictions in this testimony : the thick wall-to-wall carpet Marilyn had made posed in her bedroom couldn't let the light pass under the door.Later, she said she was alarmed by the phone ringing.
The chronolgy of the events has also some improbabilities : she would have declared to Jack Clemmons, the first police officer arrived on the scene, that she had informed Greenson at midnight, and not at 3.00 AM as she later pretended it.
He asserted that when he arrived, at 4.40 AM, Eunice Murray was doing the cleaning : she had made a laundry and was cleaning the house.
On June 1, 1962, Marilyn's birthday on the set of "Something's Got to Give"
On August 5, 1962
On August 7, 1962, at Helena Drive
On August 8, 1962
According to the Stocking family,
After the death of her sister in 1972,
Eunice married her brother-in-law Franklin Blackmer,a minister of the
left a widow, she returned to her family in Southern California, living usually
on the Westside just a few miles away from
Since Marilyn's death and the rumors suspected the Kennedy's brothers, the attention was focused on Eunice Murray. In 1985 she claimed to a team of filmmakers who directed a documentary for the BBC that Robert Kennedy had actually come in the afternoon of August 4, 1962. But then she foreswore, under the pretext that she was 82 years old, and that things became confused.
She lived her last years with her daughter in Tucson, Arizona, where she died.
She lived her last years with her daughter in Tucson, Arizona, where she died.
"Marilyn : the Last Months",
Eunice Murray et Rose Shade, New York, Pyramid Books, 1975.