University of Notre Dame

The Story of Notre Dame
Brother Aidan's Extracts

DONARD, BROTHER (Ernest Proskovic) (Died March 21, 1936) (Asthma and Heart)

"Brother Donard, Superior at St. Joseph of Holy Cross, Valatie, New York, died on Saturday, March 21, 1936. He had been stationed there since last summer when he became the first Superior of the new Juniorate upon its opening. He was buried in the Community Cemetery at Notre Dame, on Tuesday, March 24th.

"Stationed at Sacred Heart College, Watertown, for several years as Junior Prefect before his Eastern assignment, Brother Donard had been in poor health for some time. He suffered greatly and silently, for months being unable to sleep more than three hours at night.

"Deeply calm and cheerful in spite of his sufferings, Brother Donard won the love of Brothers and postulants at Sacred Heart where he was considered a religious of great sanctity. It was his experience to undergo five operations without general anesthetic for sinus trouble and asthma; his patience during these experiences aroused the wonder and admiration of all who knew him.

"'I did not pray for him but TO him', one Brother at Sacred Heart declared after Father Devers has said Mass in the College chapel for the repose of Brother's soul.

"A graduate pharmacist before he became a member of Holy Cross, Brother Donard was head of the Science Department at Sacred Heart for several years. His personality, his learning and his religious spirit combined to make him an excellent teacher, and many young Brothers, his students before going to the Novitiate at Notre Dame, owe him an incalculable debt for assistance of every kind.

"In a letter to the Very Reverend Superior General, the death of Brother Donard was described by the Chaplain of St. Joseph of Holy Cross, Father Whelly:

'When I arrived from Albany Friday night,' Father Whelly wrote, 'I asked Brother whether we should have confessions or conference that night. 'Conference, Father' he replied. It had to do with God's call to us: the call to existence, to sancity, to a state of life, and the call of death. During the night he suffered an attack of asthma, followed by a heart attack that proved fatal.'

"He died in the evening, shortly after receiving Extreme Unction. During his repeated attacks I never heard him complain. He died on Our Lady's Day, and I am sure his purgatory, if he had any, was very short." ASSOCIATE OF ST. JOSEPH, April, 1936

See the "Associate", July, 1936.

‹— Brother Aidan's Extracts —›