Biographies

Brother Adrien Riley, MM

Born: September 13, 1902
Oath: May 23, 1927
Died: February 3, 1947

Vincent J. Riley, Brother Adrian, was born in South Boston September 13, 1902. After completion of his primary school education he found employment in various occupations, including dairy work and poultry raising.

In August, 1926 Vincent, then 23 years old, wrote to Maryknoll for information concerning the missionary vocation and was accepted in October. Father James A. Walsh called him to the reception of the habit on May 23, 1927. His letter declared: “I take this occasion to express our satisfaction with your attitude toward our work and with the spirit which you have shown.”

In October, 1928 Brother Adrian was assigned to Seattle where he worked for seventeen years among the Japanese. He was bookkeeper, bus driver and physical education director of the boys. In this last capacity he was so successful that the Bishop of the Diocese made him supervisor of all Catholic school athletics. In Seattle Brother was highly regarded by his superiors for his ability to do a great deal of work with little fuss, for his intelligence and good judgement, and for the generous service to the boys committed to his care.

In the summer of 1945 the Council transferred him to Hawaii. “Your letter assigning me to Hawaii,”  he wrote, “was a happy surprise and I will try very hard to be worthy of the confidence Maryknoll has in me.” Brother was assigned to Sacred Heart Parish in Honolulu and once again did notable work with the youth. He was athletic manager of the Maryknoll school, kept the parish books, and was of assistance to the priests in many ways.

Brother Adrian’s death was most unexpected. He had been on a four-day tour with the basketball team, returning on a Sunday afternoon. The next day, February 3rd, at 3 P.M. Brother took a grade school team for a game at St. Louis School. However, he fell ill and was sent to a hosppital. Brother was annointed immediately and shortly after, peacefully passed away.

His burial took place on the Island. The funeral was attended by great numbers of students, religious and others who had been associated with him in his work.