Rev. Thomas G. O’Brien, CSV, died Saturday, February 16, 2002, at the age of 82. Fr. O’Brien was born in Dunlap, Iowa on April 26, 1919 to Joseph and Mary Bridget O’Brien. He is survived by one brother, Fr. Michael Joseph O’Brien, CSV, one sister, Mrs. Mary Francis Freberg, and many nieces and nephews.
Fr. O’Brien professed First Vows as a Viatorian on August 15, 1942, Final Vows on July 31, 1945 and was ordained a priest by Bishop Gerald T. Bergan in Des Moines, Iowa on May 17, 1947.
Fr. O’Brien is a graduate of St. Joseph High School in Dunlap, Iowa, and attended Dowling Junior College, Des Moines, Iowa and St. Ambrose College, Davenport, Iowa, where he received his B.A. in English. He attended St. Thomas Seminary in Denver, Colorado (1944-47), where he received his M.A.
During his ministry, Fr. O’Brien served the Church as an educator, administrator, chaplain and parish priest. His first assignment was Our Lady of Mercy Mission, Chicago, Illinois (2/44-8/44) as counselor and then Villa Maria Camp, McHenry, Illinois (1946) as counselor. Fr. O’Brien then served at Our Lady of Grace Parish, Chicago, Illinois (1947) as assistant pastor, St. Joseph School for the Deaf, Bronx, New York (1947-48) as teacher, Our Lady of Solace Parish, New York (1948) as assistant pastor, and then Cathedral Boys High School (1948-51) as teacher. Fr. O’Brien then served at St. Phillips High School, Chicago, Illinois (9/51-2/52) as assistant teacher. In 1952, Fr. O’Brien entered the United States Air Force as chaplain, where he continued in this role until 1972. After his time in the Air Force, Fr. O’Brien served at Sacred Heart Church, Goodrich, Illinois (1972-78), attended Notre Dame University, South Bend, Indiana for studies (3/79-5/79) and then served at Sunrise Hospital, Las Vegas, Nevada as hospital chaplain (1980-83). He then retired to the Province Center, where he lived until entering Resurrection Life Center in because of failing health. He resided there until his death.
Visitation took place at the Province Center, 1212 E. Euclid Street, Arlington Heights, Illinois on Tuesday, February 19, 2002 from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. The Mass of Resurrection was celebrated at the Province Center on Wednesday, February 20, 2002 at 10:00 a.m. Burial was in the Viatorian Community plot at Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Hillside, Illinois.
Please remember our brother “Red” and his family in your Masses and prayers.
Taken from letter to the Viatorian Community, February 19, 2002, from the Provincial, Rev. Charles G. Bolser, CSV