Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Sad Day

Br. David Downey, OSB
Born in Dodge City, KS
Professed Vows: July 11, 1963
Transferred to St. Gregory's Abbey: September 3, 2006
Br. David was originally a monk of Holy Cross Abbey in Canyon City, CO. His transfer to our community at St. Gregory's was finalized on September 3, 2006. He has enjoyed working with the therapeutic riding services provide to persons with developmental disabilities offered at the Charham Arena on the campus of St. Gregory's. Having been raised on a farm, he enjoys outdoor work and is very fond of animals. Br. David is currently battling advanced cancer and appreciates the prayers and support of many family members, former students and friends.
From: Br. George Hubl, O.S.B. []
Sent: Wednesday, January 09, 2008 8:38 AM
Subject: Br. David Downey Passes into Eternal Life
Importance: High
I share with you the news that Br. David Downey, monk of St. Gregory’s Abbey, died peacefully in the Lord this morning at 8:45. He was strengthened by the sacraments and died at the monastery in the presence of his sister Kathleen and members of the monastic community.
Br. David was born on October 16, 1940, to Michael and Nellie (O’Keefe) Downey of Dodge City, KS. He professed vows as a monk of Holy Cross Abbey, Canyon City, CO, on July 11, 1963. It was a sad moment for Brother David when Holy Cross Abbey was not able to continue; it began to close its doors in 2004 and the remaining monks sought transfer to a number of other monasteries. Brother David and his great friend Brother Matthew came to St. Gregory’s Abbey, and promised their stability here on September 3, 2006. It is bittersweet to note that Br. Matthew passed away suddenly less than a year ago on February 16, 2007, and Br. David will be buried in the Abbey Cemetery next to him.
He attended St. Thomas Seminary in Denver, CO, St. Bernard’s College in St. Bernard, AL, and St. Benedict College in Atchison, KS. He was a certified Instructor of Horsemanship from Ranchland in Dallas, TX. Br. David was extremely popular among the students and friends of Holy Cross Academy, serving as a mentor to many. Numerous Academy alumni have traveled to St. Gregory’s over the last two years to visit with their friend, Br. David. Since coming to St. Gregory’s, Br. David was a faithful and active member of the community. He put his training and long experience with horses and therapeutic riding to work at the stables at St. Gregory’s, assisting with the therapeutic horseback riding program located on campus. He quickly became highly regarded and beloved by members of the extended community of St. Gregory’s.
Br. David was diagnosed with gastro-esophageal cancer last March. He battled the disease with courage and faith. After he learned that his cancer had metastasized in December, he embraced God’s will for his life. The monks at St. Gregory’s are very grateful to members of Br. David’s Family, the Abbey Health Care Staff, and Heartland Hospice for making it possible for Br. David to remain at the monastery until his death.
My Uncle Larry, known to his community of brothers as Brother David, lost his battle with cancer this morning. He will be greatly missed by his family and community. I have fond memories of him as a gentle man, always soft spoken and extremely kind.

My children got to spend time with him several years ago at Holy Cross Abbey . He showed my city kids the way the abbey farm worked. They spent time with him and the horses and goats. I got to see him in June when I was back in Kansas sadly for the funeral of another uncle. I am so glad I was able to be around him one more time before he left this world this morning.

Of the 12 Downey children there are now 5 remaining. They include my mother, Aunt Doris, Aunt Kate, Uncle Jerry and Uncle Tim.

Uncle Larry I will miss you.

1 comment:

  1. Kathy,
    I am sorry for your loss..
    How have you been? I have some more burp cloths for you I will probly make it over sometime next week if that is ok with you,,talk to you later..


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