It is with great
sadness that I report to you the passing of former Le Moyne President William L.
Reilly, S.J., who died Thursday, December 10 at Murray-Weigel Hall at Fordham University. He was 94 years of
Fr. Reilly was the longest-serving president in Le Moyne's
history, serving from 1964 to 1976. He was a respected and
imaginative leader, initiating plans and programs that shape Le Moyne to this
day. He also spearheaded the construction of Foery and Harrison
halls, the academic building that would later be named for him, and the
expansion of the campus grounds.
Fr. Reilly entered
the novitiate in 1932 and was ordained in 1945. He attended Woodstock College in Maryland,
where he received a B.A. in Philosophy, and also studied Theology at
Weston College in Weston,
Mass., and received a Ph.D. in Philosophy at
Fr. Reilly taught at
Fordham University and Canisius College before becoming president of Le
Moyne College in 1964. After leaving Le Moyne, Fr. Reilly
served in several important capacities, including associate vice president for
academic affairs at Fordham University; teacher and retreat and pastoral
minister in Benin City,
Nigeria; and retreat minister
in Cape Coast, Ghana. He took up residence at
The visitation and funeral will take place at Fordham
University, and there will also be a Memorial Mass for Fr. Reilly on the Le
Moyne campus in January 2010, with additional arrangements to be
Please join me in offering humble prayers in gratitude for Fr.
Reilly's long life of service and gracious wisdom, and for his loving example in
so many lives. As a College, we are honored by our long association with Fr.
Reilly. We pray for the repose of his soul.
Sincerely, Fred P. Pestello,