Rev. Francis J. Crawford, O.S.A. (1917-1979)
Rev. Francis P. Crawford, O.S.A., entered eternal life on March 19, 1979.
Francis Paul Crawford was born on May 10, 1917, in Mount Carmel, Pennsylvania, to Robert and Mary (Strantzk). He was baptized on May 20, 1917, at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church, Mount Carmel. He received the Sacrament of Confirmation on October 10, 1926, at the same church.
Francis received his elementary education at Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, Mount Carmel. He earned his high school diploma in 1935 from Mount Carmel Catholic High School, Mount Carmel. He entered the Augustinian program of formation in 1936 at Augustinian Academy, Staten Island, New York.
He was received into the Augustinian Novitiate on September 9, 1937. Francis professed simple (temporary) vows in the Order of St. Augustine on September 10, 1938, and solemn (permanent) vows on September 10, 1941. He earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Villanova College, Villanova, Pennsylvania, in 1941. He pursued theological studies from 1941 to 1945 at Augustinian College, Washington, D.C. Francis was ordained a priest on May 18, 1944. He earned an M.A. in Sociology from Catholic University of America, Washington, in 1945. He was awarded with a degree of Specialist in Education by DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois, in 1958.
Father Crawford was assigned to St. Rita High School, Chicago, in 1945. There he served at different times as teacher, Dean of Discipline, Athletic Director, Director of Studies and Principal until 1968, except for one school year (1961-1962), when he was Director of Studies at Mendel Catholic High School, Chicago. From 1968 to 1971, he served as Principal of Mendel Catholic High School.
Father Crawford was assigned to St. Clare of Montefalco Catholic Parish, Chicago, in 1971 as Assistant Pastor and Prior (local superior) of the Augustinian community. During his stay at St. Clare, he developed heart trouble. He was assigned in 1978 to St. Rita Catholic Parish, Chicago, in semi-retirement. He died suddenly on March 19, 1979.
Father Crawford was widely known for initiating, promoting and coaching Golden Gloves Boxing at St. Rita High School.
He is buried in the Augustinian plot at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Alsip, Illinois.