Friday, January 29, 2010

Death of Daniel Ryan Kloos in Haiti Earthquake

This week I noticed an obituary in the News-Herald and Plain Dealer for a 24-year-old boy with ties to the Greater Cleveland area (he also had ties to San Diego, where he had attended college, and to Phoenix, Arizona, where he had been living). The boy is Daniel Ryan Kloos, and he was killed in the collapse of a building in Petionville, just outside of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Daniel Ryan had been visiting his sister Erin, where they volunteered at the Father Wasson Center (connected to the international volunteer group, Friends of the Orphans). Erin Kloos was injured, but her life was spared. A memorial for Daniel Ryan Kloos was to take place tomorrow, I believe, at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Gates Mills, Ohio.

I was struck by the last name "Kloos" because I had known a Bob Kloos when I was in St. Joseph High School in 1962-63. Bob later left St. Joe's for Borromeo Seminary, and became a much-beloved priest in the Cleveland Diocese. If memory serves, Bob's family was from Willowick, and Bob at one time served as a priest at St. Mary Magdalene Church in Willowick. Bob left the priesthood some time in the early 1990's, and I've seen his name lately in news articles about the campaign to save St. Peter's Church in Cleveland (the bishop has ordered St. Pete's and about 50 other parishes closed). Well it turns out that Bob Kloos is indeed the uncle of Daniel Ryan Kloos.

The Kloos family must be an amazing family to produce the likes of Bob Kloos and Daniel Ryan and Erin Kloos. Our love and sympathy go out to Daniel Ryan and Erin's parents, John Kloos and Kathy Shannon, and to Ryan and Erin's sister Katie, and to grandparents Tom and Dolores Shannon, and to all their families and friends.

Daniel Ryan lost his life in service to the "least brethren." He will never be a physician as he had planned. But his life was not in vain, and his life will yield great fruit in Haiti and throughout the world. I'm always amazed how martyrdom doesn't discourage human beings. Indeed, Daniel Ryan's death will cause other people to rise up and help the orphans and poor of the world! Thank God for human compassion and human courage!

For the story on Daniel Ryan and Erin Kloos (from "Friends of the Orphans" website), click on this link or cut and paste the URL into a web browser:

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