The Rev. James O. Byrne, 99, died at 9:45 a.m. Wednesday, July 6, 2011, at St. Charles Center infirmary, in Carthagena.
He was born Aug. 28, 1911 in Glynnwood, the son of Anna (Cogan) and Thomas P. Byrne.
Survivors are nine nieces and nephews: Kathleen (Paul) Wehrle, of Sidney, Mary Agnes (Robert) Cogan, of Berea, Tom ((Kathy) Byrne, of Lima, Margie (Gene) Horman, of Wapakoneta, Janet (Mike) Ott, of Glynnwood, Patty (Paul) Korte, of Grand Rapids, Mich., Mary Ann Will, of Minster, Dr. Ted (Mary Margaret) Will, of Bemidji, Minn. Tom (Sandy) Will, of Fon du Lac, Wis; and numerous great-nieces and great-nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Thomas Byrne, The Rev. John P. Byrne, CPPS; and two sisters, Sr. Mary Alice Byrne, RSM and Margaret Will.
He was a 1929 graduate of St. Joseph High School in Wapakoneta. He also graduated from St. Gregory Seminary in Cincinnati and Mount St. Mary Seminary in Norwood. He was ordained into the Roman Catholic priesthood at St. Peter in Chains Cathedral in Cincinnati May 22, 1937.
He was the oldest priest in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. During his tenure, he served numerous parishes: St. Patrickâ€™s (northside) in Cincinnati, Nativity in Pleasant Ridge, St. Paulâ€™s in Yellow Springs, St. Paulâ€™s in Cincinnati, St. Anthonyâ€™s in Madisonville, and St. Maryâ€™s in Urbana. He retired from administration after serving as pastor of St. Albert the Great in Kettering. In retirement, he served as pastor emeritus for Holy Rosary in St. Marys. He also served 12 years as business manager of Purcell Marian High School in Cincinnati.
He was a member of Knights of Columbus Council 1592 in St. Marys, the Legion of Mary at Holy Rosary Parish, a 4th degree member of St. Gaspar del Bufalo Assembly 825 in Minster. He served on the College of Consultors for the archdiocese and in 1954, selected the location for the establishment of Lehman Catholic High School in Sidney.
He was an avid sports fan and especially enjoyed Cincinnati Reds baseball games. His favorite pastime was fishing. Father Jim was especially proud of his Irish heritage.
A Requiem Mass will be held at 2 p.m. Monday at Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church in St. Marys, with The Most Rev. Dennis M. Schnurr and Most Rev. Daniel E. Pilarczyk, con-celebrants. Burial will follow at St. Thomas Cemetery in Glynnwood.
Friends may call from 2 to 8 p.m. Sunday at the church.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to Rev. James O. Byrne Fund for Seminarians, Holy Rosary Catholic Church, or St. Charles Center.
Online condolences may be expressed via: www. millerfuneralhomes.net Arrangements are entrusted to Miller Funeral Home in St. Marys.