Bro. Andrew LaCombe, SDB
Bro. Andrew LaCombe, SDB (1932-2018)
Bro. Andrew LaCombe, 86, died on June 30 at Calvary Hospital in the Bronx. A member of the Salesians of Don Bosco, he had been a professed Salesian brother for 67 years. Bro. Andy resided and worked at the provincial house in New Rochelle, N.Y., arriving there in 1967 in order to study architecture at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. He completed his master’s degree at Pratt in 1972, was certified by the American Institute of Architects and various state boards, and then worked as the New Rochelle Province’s architect until his final illness. He was born and raised in Verner, Ont. He entered Don Bosco Juniorate at Haverstraw, N.Y., as a high school student in 1948, made his novitiate in Newton, N.J., and professed his first vows at Newton on September 8, 1951.
Bro. Andy returned to Haverstraw as part of the staff (1951-1957), and then returned to Newton in the same capacity (1957-1967). He was a very capable maintenance man and property manager. He liked to recall how often, when he was at Haverstraw, the Palisades Interstate Park police would call him at all hours to fetch a deer just killed along the parkway.
As the province’s architect, Bro. Andy designed buildings from Tampa to Boston for both the Salesians and the Salesian Sisters, and consulted on projects in other parts of the world. He was active in the New Rochelle Art Association, serving as president for several years and often as a member of prize juries. In October 2012 the Association honored him with a special award for his many services.
Bro. Andy was a treasured confrere, reliable, faithful, modest, and prayerful. He hated to be away from the community. On his 60th anniversary of profession in 2011, Bro. Andy said, “I am thankful to God for giving me the perseverance and talent to help our province and some of our missions in many ways, especially as an architect.”
Bro. Andy’s funeral will be celebrated in the Mary Help of Christians Chapel—a building which he designed—at the Marian Shrine in Haverstraw (174 Filors Lane, Stony Point, N.Y.) on Monday, July 2. He will be waked from 2:00 to 6:30 p.m. The Mass of Christian Burial will be at 7:00 p.m. He will be buried in the Salesian Cemetery in Goshen, N.Y.—the design and maintenance of which was another one of his projects—on Tuesday, July 3, at 10:00 a.m.