James Richard McAvey, O.P.
Birth: February 8, 1913
Profession: August 16, 1933
Ordination: May 17, 1939
Died: May 7, 2001
James Patrick McAvey was born in New York City, the son of James and Beatrice (Drury) McAvey. He attended St. Vincent Ferrer Gram-mar School (1918-1926) and St. Agnes High School (1926-1930), both in that city. He continued his education at Providence College (1930-1932) before entering the novitiate of St. Joseph Province at St. Rose Priory, Springfield, KY in August 1932 receiving the religious name, Richard. A year later in that same convent he made his first profession of vows.
Br. Richard studied philosophy at the Dominican House of Studies, River Forest, IL (1933-1936) and theology at the Dominican House of Studies, Somerset, OH (1936-1939). Here he was ordained with the other members of his class who called themselves “The Lost Battalion” because they were not ordained in Washington, DC, the traditional site for ordinations. The ordaining prelate was James Joseph Hartley, Bishop of Columbus, OH. The next year (1940) he completed his theological studies at the Dominican House of Studies, Washington, DC earning the Lectorate in Sacred Theology.
Fr. McAvey was sent by his superiors to study philosophy at Laval University in Quebec City, Canada. After achieving the License in Philosophy in 1943, Fr. Richard began a long teaching career at the following institutions: Dominican House of Studies, Washington, DC (1943-1945); Siena College, Memphis, TN (1945-1946); Aquinas College High School, Columbus, OH (1946-1951); University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippine (1951-1954); Aquinas College High School, Columbus, OH (1954-1956). His last teaching assignment was at Providence College, Providence College. It was here that he retired and died.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated in the chapel of St. Thomas Aquinas Priory on the campus of Providence College. Fr. Norman A. Haddad, O.P., Provincial, was the principle concelebrant and Fr. Matthew Morry was the homilist. Fr. McAvey’s body is interred in the Dominican cemetery on the campus.