Manhattan College Mourns the Loss of Two Beloved Christian Brothers
Br. James Leahy, FSC, and Br. John Loehr, FSC, were cherished members of the community.
Br. James Leahy, FSC, a De La Salle Christian Brother for 70 years, who served as an educator for much of his career in the United States, Italy, and Africa, died on Oct. 26 after being struck by a car and killed while crossing the road near the Christian Brothers Academy entrance. He was 88.
An assistant professor of theology at Manhattan College from 1966 to 1970, Brother James began his teaching career at Sacred Heart School in Manhattan in 1950. He also taught at St. Peter’s High School for Boys on Staten Island and Jesu Magister in Rome, Italy before serving as the sub-director of St. Joseph Novitiate in Barrytown, New York. He returned to Italy after teaching at Manhattan College to teach at Lateran University in Rome.
Brother James served as sub-director and director of Sangre de Cristo in Santa Fe, New Mexico, during early 1970s. He then served as sub-director and director of the Christian Brothers Novitiate in Skaneateles, New York through 1980. From 1980 to 1993, Brother James was a professor at St. Mary’s College in Moraga, California. He served as a DLS delegate in Nairobi, Kenya and as sub-director of the Novitiate in Asmara, Eritrea, from 1999-2007. Returning to the U.S., Brother James was the sub-director and pastoral care director at De La Salle Hall in Lincroft, until he retired in 2014. He was a fixture at the Christian Brothers Academy in Lincroft, New Jersey, where he resided.
Brother James entered the Novitiate at Barrytown in 1946 and received the religious habit that same year. He pronounced his perpetual vows at Hillside Hall in 1953. He attended The Catholic University of America and went on to earned his bachelor’s degree from Manhattan College. Brother James also earned a master’s degree in French from Manhattan College and then studied at Jesu Magister in Rome. There he earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in religious science before receiving an S.T.D. in theology in 1964.
A Mass of Christian Burial was held at Christian Brothers Academy on Oct. 30. Interment was the next day at St. Gabriel’s Cemetery in Marlboro, New Jersey.
Br. John Loehr, FSC, a former director of physical plant at Manhattan College, died on October 30. He was 89.
Director of Manhattan College’s physical plant from 1987-1990, Brother John began his career as a teacher at De La Salle Collegiate in Warren, Michigan. He also taught at Lincoln Hall in Lincolndale, New York. He soon began splitting his service between teaching and physical plant, serving as a teacher and working in physical plant at Christian Brothers Academy in Lincroft, New Jersey. Brother John was manager of the Butchery Trade School in Jamaica from 1981 to 1987. He served for a short time as manager of grounds at De La Salle Hall in Lincroft, NJ, before his assignment at the College. He returned to Lincroft in 1990 to work in maintenance at La Salle Provincialate.
Brother John traveled abroad again in 1992, serving as facilities manager of Bethlehem University in Bethlehem, Palestine. He returned to the United States to work with the poor in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at Villa Matthias. Brother John continued working in facilities and grounds at a number of locations until his retirement in 2012, including Highbridge Community Life Center; Roosevelt Hall Novitiate and Christian Brothers Academy and Christian Brothers Academy, all in Syracuse, New York.
Brother John entered the Novitiate in 1968 and received the religious habit that same year. He pronounced his perpetual vows at De La Salle Hall in 1974. He studied at Morrisville Agricultural & Technology College for several months before attending Hudson Valley Community College. After entering the Christian Brothers, Brother John earned a bachelor’s degree from the College of Santa Fe in New Mexico.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Saturday, November 5, at St. Patrick Church in Syracuse, NY. Interment will follow at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Syracuse.