New owners to continue legacy of Murphy's Tire Shop in New Milford

Gary Murphy, right, founder of Murphy's Tire Shop in New Milford, is shown with his daughter Beth and her husband, Jeff Taylor, the new owners of the business located at 11 Howland Road.

Gary Murphy, right, founder of Murphy’s Tire Shop in New Milford, is shown with his daughter Beth and her husband, Jeff Taylor, the new owners of the business located at 11 Howland Road.

Courtesy of Murphy's Tire Shop

NEW MILFORD — Murphy’s Tire Shop has been a family business for more than 50 years in town.

Last month, the business changed hands, with a third member of the Murphy family taking the reign.

Founder Gary Murphy’s daughter, Beth, and her husband, Jeff Taylor assumed the role of owners Nov. 2.

The new owners plan to continue to run the business as Gary Murphy, also known as Murph Sr., did when he owned the business throughout the shop’s history.

“We want to run it like my father, to keep that level of customer service in place,” Beth Taylor said.

The shop handles “all things tire,” the new owners said. That includes tire sales and installation, tire repairs, tire rotation and balancing, patching and/or plugging holes, wheel balancing and tire pressure sensor replacement.

With the Taylors at the helm, Taylor said they plan to infuse some new energy and life into the established business, while paying tribute to her father and the business he founded.

She said she and her husband have already brought in a computer system, which allows them to order directly from vendors, and plan to upgrade some of the shop’s equipment, and revitalize the show showroom “to make it more comfortable.”

In addition, the Taylors will eventually open a second bay.

Tom Powell said he has been a longtime customer because he values supporting a local business.

He said the family “has always treated me well” and serviced “everything I need to run my business and personal life.”

Resident Frank Wargo has also been a longtime customer of the shop, having first patronized the business when the elder Murphy offered tire services out of his home. At the time, the two men were neighbors, and Wargo had just opened Fire Control Services and was also operating his business out of his home.

“I still go there,” said Wargp. “They’re dependable, and you go with people who have been good to you.”

Wargo emphasized the importance of supporting “a small hometown business” and cited their “personal touch.”

Wargo said he first began taking his personal vehicles to the shop, but as his business grew, he sent his fleet of business vehicles to the shop for service.

Murphy Sr. retired 15 years ago when his son, Gary “Murph Jr.” Murphy, took over the business. But the elder Murphy came out of retirement at 77 this past spring to keep the shop open when his son decided he would close the business around the time the pandemic began.

Family members sat down and had a family meeting to decide the future of the shop.

“It’s easy to say we want to keep the business going to make Dad proud and keep his legacy going,” Taylor related, “but, more often than not, it’s not that something like that is said to the parents. We are proud of them.”

“My father gave us a good life because of this business,” she said. “In our eyes, we wanted to show him how proud we are of him and make him proud of us by keeping the business going.”

Murph Sr. started the business in the basement of his family’s home in 1968. At the time, he worked for Scoville in town and focused on the tire shop part time until about 1985 when he rented a space in the community.

He eventually moved the shop to its present location at 11 Howland Road, right next to J&J Printing, which is owned by his daughter, Shari Baron.

“We are truly grateful to our loyal customers and the town of New Milford for being so enthusiast and interested in this change of ownership,” Taylor said.

“While my dad is looking forward to retirement — again — he will often be found at the tire shop just hanging around,” she said.

“I don't think he will ever truly be able to walk away and just enjoy retirement; the shop means too much to him...and he'd get too bored,” she quipped.

For more information, call 860-354-2132.