A Rumor of War

A Rumor of War

by

Philip Caputo

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Lieutenant Murph McCloy Character Analysis

A platoon commander in Charley Company, or C Company in the 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines. Caputo describes him as a “slender, straw-blond Kentuckian” who is able to ignore the unpleasant aspects of war in favor of his romantic vision of soldiering. Later, Caputo finds out that he has extended his tour and becomes the executive officer of C Company, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines.
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Lieutenant Murph McCloy Character Timeline in A Rumor of War

The timeline below shows where the character Lieutenant Murph McCloy appears in A Rumor of War. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter Two
Heroism and Identity Theme Icon
...easy. The other platoon commanders in Charley Company, including Glen Lemmon, Bruce Tester, and Murph McCloy, have one to two years’ of experience, while Caputo has none. As a result, he... (full context)
Chapter Three
Danger and Uncertainty Theme Icon
...a call from Lieutenant Colonel Bain about the impending deployment. Meanwhile, Philip Caputo and Murph McCloy are on the terrace of the Officers’ Club, drinking beer and admiring the view of... (full context)
Chapter Five
Heroism and Identity Theme Icon
Danger and Uncertainty Theme Icon
War and Disillusionment Theme Icon
Widener wakes Caputo up at 4:00 A.M. the next morning. Peterson is lacing his boots. McCloy is shaving at a makeshift washstand outside, with only a flashlight to help him see... (full context)
Chapter Eight
The Morality of War Theme Icon
...afternoon, and twenty-five enlisted men from C Company go to Da Nang in trucks. Caputo, McCloy, Peterson, and Sergeant Loker drive in the captain’s jeep. It is their job to ensure... (full context)
The Morality of War Theme Icon
War and Disillusionment Theme Icon
...of the beggars. Then, “a mob of small boys with very old eyes” accosts him, McCloy, and Loker. When the marines do not give them money, the children demand cigarettes. When... (full context)
The Morality of War Theme Icon
...taken with her, though he has no intention of taking her back home with him. McCloy then introduces Caputo to two girls from Simone’s “stable.” They are “plump, pleasant, and reasonable”... (full context)
The Morality of War Theme Icon
War and Disillusionment Theme Icon
McCloy takes Caputo to a Vietnamese restaurant and then to a brothel. The prostitutes are half-naked... (full context)
Heroism and Identity Theme Icon
The Morality of War Theme Icon
Danger and Uncertainty Theme Icon
McCloy and Caputo next go to the Blue Dahlia, a hangout for Australian advisers stationed in... (full context)
The Morality of War Theme Icon
Danger and Uncertainty Theme Icon
...there is pounding on the door. It is the MPs. The Australians order Caputo and McCloy to hide under a couch, as the bar is off-limits to Americans after a certain... (full context)
Chapter Nine
Heroism and Identity Theme Icon
Loyalty and Camaraderie Theme Icon
Danger and Uncertainty Theme Icon
...he left behind. He senses that something has occurred. His old friends, including Lemmon and McCloy, seem distant from him. Tester asks him about his weekend in Japan, and Caputo talks... (full context)
Chapter Twelve
Heroism and Identity Theme Icon
The Morality of War Theme Icon
Loyalty and Camaraderie Theme Icon
War and Disillusionment Theme Icon
...Caputo gets back into the jeep, feeling dizzy. Kazmarack starts the engine. Just then, Murph McCloy pulls up in another jeep. He has arrived to ensure that the bodies arrived all... (full context)
Chapter Fourteen
Heroism and Identity Theme Icon
Loyalty and Camaraderie Theme Icon
...get a platoon in C Company, Levy’s old company. Captain Neal is the skipper, and McCloy is the executive officer. Neal assigns Caputo to the second platoon, where he will take... (full context)
Chapter Eighteen
Danger and Uncertainty Theme Icon
...The men were carrying papers that were obvious forgeries, and their ages were falsified. Lieutenant McCloy, who now speaks fluent Vietnamese, interrogated them along with an ARVN militia sergeant. The men... (full context)
The Morality of War Theme Icon
War and Disillusionment Theme Icon
...why Crowe did not capture the two men and bring them in. Crowe says that McCloy already cleared them. Caputo calls HQ with Crowe’s report, dreading the lecture he thinks he... (full context)