William J. Reilly, O.S.A.

1885 – 1925 (March 8)

William Joseph Reilly, son of William Reilly and Maria Reilly, was born on April 11, 1885, and baptized on April 19th in the parish of Saint Peter, Staten Island, New York. He was confirmed on April 27, 1897, in the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Staten Island, by Archbishop John M. Farley. He attended Augustinian Academy as a member of its first graduating class in 1903, and was the first alumnus to join the Province. William entered the novitiate at Villanova on July 3, 1904, professed simple vows on July 4, 1905 and made solemn profession three years later. In 1909, he was transferred to Saint Rita High School, Chicago, Illinois, where he completed his studies and began teaching. William was ordained to the priesthood on May 21, 1910, by Most Rev. James E. Quigley, D.D., Archbishop of Chicago, at the Cathedral of the Holy Name.

Father Reilly’s first assignment was to the Parish of Saint James Minor, Carthage, the oldest Catholic Parish in Northern New York. He also served in Lawrence, Massachusetts, taught at Saint Rita High School, Chicago and, on June 30, 1915, he was assigned to the original Augustinian Academy at Austin Place, Staten Island. In 1918, he was appointed its president. In June, 1919, the Province Definitory authorized that the Academy at its original site at Austin Place be closed. Shortly, thereafter, it was relocated on Grymes Hill, Staten Island.

Father Reilly returned at vice-rector of the new Academy in 1923, and died there on March 8, 1925, at the age of 40. He is buried in the community cemetery at Villanova, Pa.