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Kearney Resident: Father Donald J. O’Brien, 86

Thursday, June 9, 2022
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Father Donald J. O’Brien

Father Donald J. O’Brien, 86 of Kearney passed away Saturday, June 4, 2022 at his home surrounded by family. A Funeral Mass will be 10:30 a.m. Monday, June 13, 2022 at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Kearney. Interment will be held 2:00 p.m. Monday, June 13, 2022 at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery near Wood River, NE. Visitation will be 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. Sunday, June 12, 2022 at the church followed by a 6:00 p.m. Vigil/Prayer Service.Donald J. O’Brien was born September 4, 1935, in Minden, NE, to Donald M. and Lillian C. (Quinn) O’Brien. He attended St. Patrick’s School in North Platte, graduating in 1953 and remained close to his classmates his entire life. He began his studies at St. Thomas Seminary in Denver, CO, the same year.Father O’Brien was ordained at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Grand Island in 1961. His first assignment as a priest was at St. Mary’s Hospital in North Platte. His following parish assignments were in Sidney, Amherst and Eddyville, St. Mary’s Cathedral in Grand Island, Shelton, Ainsworth, Scottsbluff, Blessed Sacrament in Grand Island, and 26 years in Cozad and Gothenburg. He taught and administered at multiple Catholic schools during these assignments. He served as the Catholic chaplain of the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Grand Island, where he became involved in the alcohol treatment program, celebrating 45 years of sobriety at the time of his death.After his retirement in 2015, Father O’Brien moved to Kearney, NE, where he served at Prince of Peace and St. James Catholic churches, Good Samaritan Hospital and Mount Carmel Home. He celebrated 61 years as a priest on May 23, 2022. He touched many lives as a priest and was the patriarch of the O’Brien family.He was preceded in death by his parents; brother Dr. John Kingsley O’Brien; sister-in-law, Mary Lou O’Brien; and his brother-in-law, Dr. Louis Corwin. He is survived by his sister, Shirley O’Brien Corwin of Columbia, MO, 13 nieces and nephews: Margaret “Peggy” (Brian) Connell, Columbia, MO; Donald (Sherry) Corwin, Columbia, MO; Maureen (Jim) Dippold, Stamford, CT; Nancy (Bill) Rath, St. Louis, MO; James (Deb) Corwin, Cincinnati, OH; Mary (Steve) White, Kansas City, KS; Thomas (Sandy) Corwin, Augusta, GA; Paul Corwin, Columbia, MO; Kathleen (Lou) Cipriano, Dallas, TX; Patrick (Rhonda “Ronnie”) O’Brien, Shelton, NE; Tim O’Brien, Philippines; Dennis O’Brien, North Platte, NE; Mary Bridget O’Brien, Lincoln, NE, 18 great nieces and nephews and five great-great nieces and nephews.Memorials are suggested to North Platte Catholic Schools, Grand Island Central Catholic Elementary School or to Kearney Catholic High School. Condolences may be shared online at Services are entrusted to O’Brien Straatmann Redinger Funeral and Cremation Services.