Fr. Neal William McDermott, O.P., was born on February 14, 1933, in Carman, Manitoba, Canada. Fr. Neal was baptized on February 21, 1933. At the age of 86, he died peacefully on May 9, 2019.
Fr. Neal attended Loras College in Dubuque, IA, from 1952-1954. He received the following degrees: St. Thomas Pontifical College, PhB., PhL., 1958; Aquinas Institute of Theology, S.T.Lr., 1961; University of Chicago, M.A., 1971 and Emory University, D.Min., 1984.
In 1954, Fr. Neal joined St. Albert the Great Province; he would join the Province of St. Martin de Porres when it is established in 1979. He professed simple vows at St. Peter Martyr Priory in Winona, MN, on Aug. 31, 1955 and solemn vows at the Dominican House of Studies in River Forest, IL on Aug. 31, 1959. In 1960 he was ordained to the Diaconate and June 3, 1961, he was ordained to the Priesthood.
Fr. Neal’s first assignment was as Latin Instructor at Fenwick High School in Chicago where he served for two years. Following this assignment, Fr. Neal served as Chaplain and Asst. Professor Theology at Edgewood College in Madison, WI. Fr. Neal was next the Director of Religious Affairs and Asst. Professor of Psychology at Barry College in Miami, FL. For the next six years, he served as Director Campus Ministry at St. Louis University. Fr. Neal’s next ministry brought him to Atlanta where he served as Superior of Augustine House. In 1984, Fr. Neal was assigned in New Orleans, where he would remain until his death. For the first six years he was Associate Campus Minister at Loyola University. Four years into this ministry, he was Dean of Campus Ministry. For the next twelve years, he served as Pastor at St. Dominic Parish. During this time period, he also was Vicar Forane, City Park-Gentilly Deanery, Archdiocese of New Orleans and on the Priest Senate (Religious Order Rep). Fr. Neal also served as Executive Director, Department of Christian Formation, Archdiocese of New Orleans and Director of Special Projects for Archbishop of New Orleans. While living at St. Anthony of Padua Priory, Fr. Neal went on limited service and then moved to Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center where he would remain until his death.
Fr. Neal is predeceased by his parents, Frances Lyda Fuller and Timothy Francis McDermott and his siblings, Ellen Harriet Nolan, Joseph Francis McDermott, Blaine Edward McDermott and Alberta R. Nelson. He is survived by his sister, Patricia A. Hosea of Fullerton, CA, and many nieces and nephews. Relatives and friends are invited to attend a visitation on Thursday, May 16, 2019 from 6:30 PM until 8:30 PM in the J. Garic Schoen Chapel of JACOB SCHOEN & SON FUNERAL HOME, 3827 Canal Street, New Orleans, LA 70119. A Funeral Mass will be at 1:00 PM on Friday, May 17, 2019 at St. Dominic Catholic Church, 775 Harrison Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70124. Visitation will be from 12:00 PM until the time of the Mass. Interment will be in Rosaryville Cemetery in Ponchatoula, LA. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Southern Dominican Province, 1421 N. Causeway Blvd., Suite 200, Metairie, LA 70001.