Alumni Association of The Pontifical North American College

Fall Thomas Donaldson





HOLMEN — Father Tom died peacefully on April 21, 2012, in Holmen after an extended illness.

Tom was born in Eau Claire in 1939. He attended St. Patrick’s Grade School and graduated in 1957 from Regis High School. He attended the College of St. Thomas for three years prior to entering the seminary in La Crosse. Upon graduating, he entered Mt. St. Bernard’s Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. He later did graduate studies at Seattle University.

Tom was ordained a priest for the Diocese of La Crosse on June 1, 1968. Diocesan assignments over 44 years of priestly service took him to St. Michael’s Parish in Wausau, St. Charles Parish in Chippewa Falls, Santa Cruz, Bolivia as a missionary for nine years, Notre Dame Parish in Chippewa Falls, St. Joseph’s Parish in Elk Mound and St. Francis Parish in Ellsworth where he served for 22 years. He retired in 2010 and relocated to St. Joseph’s Parish in Arkansaw, Wis., where he remained pastorally active in the local church including his much loved service to the Hispanic community in Minnesota.

Tom is survived by his siblings, Sr. Mary Jo, OSB, Elizabeth (John) Maloney, Robert, Patrick, Barbara (Nathan) Collins, Sr. Bridget, OSB, Rita (David) McCarthy; and a vast number of nieces and nephews whom he loved dearly.

Tom was preceded in death by his father, Ralph Benedict; his mother, Josephine Mary (Monarski); and brother, John Charles.

Gratitude and blessings are extended to all the friends and families who have expressed their love for Fr. Tom over all the years. We ask that you remember him in your prayers. The family is also deeply grateful for the professional and very personal care of the hospice staff of Mayo Clinic’s Franciscan Healthcare.

There will be a mass at St. Elizabeth’s in Holmen on Thursday at 11 a.m., celebrated by Fr. Del Malin along with Fr. John Parr, with visitation beginning at 10 a.m. Visitation will be Thursday evening at St. Francis in Ellsworth from 4 to 8 p.m. with the vigil prayer service at 7 p.m. Mass of Christian burial will be Friday at 11 a.m. at St Francis, with visitation beginning at 10 a.m. The celebrant will be Bishop William Callahan and homilist will be Fr. Tom’s nephew, Fr. Christopher Collins, SJ.

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