Memories of Fr. K

After Fr. K’s passing, we invited members of the community to share their memories with HCM. Thank you to all the alumni, faculty, staff and friends of the College who shared special memories of Fr. K. When HCM compiled them all, there were more than 30 pages of memories, photos and “thank yous” for this remarkable man. Read them here:

Liz Maloy '03:

I posted a photo from Presidents Council a few years ago on Instagram as soon as I heard last night. Friends from college started texting immediately, and it felt good to connect. I have a very favorite photo of us when I was a sophomore in college on The Hill that I can't wait to find when I am home for Christmas.

Fr. K was Holy Cross. Somehow one man embodied what the college stood for "Men and Women for Others" and made us want to be BETTER PEOPLE. He inspired greatness in the classroom, on the lacrosse field and certainly on campus. We are lucky to have known him.

Tom Neagle '70:

My son, Michael E. Neagle, Ph.D. '98, is a history professor at Nichols College in Dudley, MA. He taught one semester as an adjunct professor of history at Holy Cross and was a colleague of Fr. K. Michael, knowing that Fr. K was an expert on Lincoln asked him if he would give a lecture at Nichols on April 14, 2015, which was the 150th anniversary of Lincoln being shot (dying the next day on April 15). Fr. K graciously accepted the invitation and spoke to a packed audience mostly of Nichols students but also including me and my wife. After the lecture, Fr. K was happy to sign my copy of his book, "Thy Honored Name."

I ran into Fr. K three or four times since that lecture and he invariably asked me how Michael was doing and the progress on his book publication ["America's Forgotten Colony Cuba's Isle of Pines" scheduled for publication by Cambridge University Press on December 23, 2016]. My intention was to give Fr. K a copy of Michael's book as soon as it was published.

While I am sure Fr. K will be missed by the many student-athletes for the teams for which he was chaplain and the thousands of students who he taught over the years at Holy Cross, he will also be sorely missed by the posters on Crossports for his insight, good humor and and plain Midwestern common sense. Rest in peace, Fr. K. You will be missed.

Bill McCrystal '08:

Fr. K. was my professor both junior and senior year. I took his ever famous Lincoln and his Legacy and Age of Jackson classes. It was Fr. K who instilled an even deeper love of history into a slowly maturing history major's academic fervor. I have carried Fr. K with me for the last nine years as I teach history on the high school level at my alma mater. Like Fr. K I share a deep love for my school and for Holy Cross.

His Jesuit ideals were omnipresent. He was truly a man for others, demonstrated by his ability to coalesce the professionalism of the classroom with a child-like glee for learning. I know classmates of mine would agree that Fr. K courses were our fondest academic memories. Even days before his untimely passing, Fr. K responded to an email with his typical Midwestern politeness. I will miss Fr. K, but his legacy lives on in the thousands who knew him and the thousands more who are impacted by those he taught and mentored.

Thank you for the opportunity.

Sarah McGuire '08:

I wanted to share my deepest sadness at Father K's passing. I am a graduate of the class of 2008, and was lucky enough to have Father K for a few classes, including Age of Jackson and Lincoln and his Legacy. I wanted to share a few memories.

1. Prior to history classes with Father K, my interest in the study of history was modest at best. I was torn as a sophomore between a major in English or history, and took a class with him. He was able to make the stories of Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay, and our other founders come alive in a way I'd never experienced. His ability to find humor and humanity in these characters that so often become flat in history texts inspired me to pursue not only a major in the subject area, but to pursue becoming an educator that might provide those human stories to students. He was absolutely a primary influence in my career path, as I am now in my 9th year teaching history and currently serve as the supervisor for my 6-12 department in Duxbury, MA.

2. Fr. K taught me how to write research papers, and to love them. Thanks to his urging and guidance, I submitted one of my papers for the Lincoln course for an award and was given an honorable mention. Had he not been invested in my writing experience, I would have never garnered the skills worthy of that award, nor would I have even considered submitting my paper. In fact, Fr. K's papers made me love the investigative work of history. I recall setting up in the stacks in Dinand and searching for an old set of Presidential journals, or letters among soldiers or the like, and being able to find in these sources those stories that Fr. K made come alive so well. I try and translate that to the research experiences I've instituted across our 6-12 department so students experience the work of historians throughout their years.

I wanted to share these memories and reflections on his passing and am sure many other former students and colleagues alike share my sorrow at his passing. Thanks for providing a space to offer these memories.

Anthony John '16:

I only had two real "encounters" with Fr. K during my time at Holy Cross:

1. Talking to Matt Eggemeier (somewhat loudly) about graduate school in the history department hallway in Fenwick outside Fr. K's office...he proceeded to slam his door and we both were cracking up on our walk up to Smith.

2. When I went to his office two days before graduation to get his autograph after purchasing his book at the bookstore. He was ecstatic to learn that I'd be continuing my studies at Harvard and we talked about his years there; I appreciated his heartfelt message.

That's how I'd like to remember Fr. K, with humor and humility. RIP to his eternal soul.

Kirk Carapezza '05:

I was lucky to take two of Fr. K's courses. Each week, between his enthusiastic lectures about Lincoln and the nature of heroism, he'd remind us that to whom much is given, much is expected.

Allyssa Bates '94:

Fr. Kuzniewski taught the first history class I took at Holy Cross. It was a topics class for first years and it started promptly at 8 a.m.—a fact he emphasized that first day. The second day of class at 8 a.m., he looked at the clock, looked at the class list, sighed and then took an old-fashioned ash tray and leaned it against the door with a garbage can balanced on top of it. When my un-suspecting classmate tried (un-successfully) to sneak into class at 8:02, he caused quite a ruckus and was reminded by Fr. K that class started at 8 a.m.—no one was ever late to Fr. K’s class again. He also famously commandeered baseball caps from those who hadn’t headed his warnings that “professional men and women don’t wear baseball caps to business meetings and you will not wear them to my class.” He always thanked the unlucky student for his contribution to his nephews’ baseball hat collection—it must have been the envy of the neighborhood.
 
I was fortunate enough to write my history thesis under Fr. K’s direction—he always challenged me to be better—a better scholar, a better swimmer, a better person. I will never hear a reference to Andrew Jackson without thinking fondly of Fr. K—at the close of his Age of Jackson class, I came home in tears…..I couldn’t believe the class was over.
 
Not only was I grateful for his genius as a history professor, I was awed by his homilies that always seemed to say just when I needed to hear. When I attended the Spiritual Exercises, Fr. K was there assisting Fr. LaBran—some of the reflections that he shared are still part of my daily prayer. As I make my way in my daily life, every day I strive to be half as good as Fr. K challenged me to be—thank goodness I have his life as such a shining example of how to do it right.

Robert Danahy '55:

I visited Fr. K at Campion Center a couple hours before his death and I’d like his many friends to learn that despite some difficult days, his death was very peaceful. At his request I brought along some stamps for the Christmas notes he was writing when I arrived. He said he felt “pretty good” and had very much enjoyed the visit of two HC colleagues earlier in the afternoon. About 9PM he asked the nurse to take him to the bathroom and put him to bed. When she checked back in an hour, he was gone.

Father was ready to die but not this quickly. He wanted to be remembered to all his HC friends.

I’ll never forget his statement — He looked forward to having “Jesus introduce him to the Father.”

Mary Beth Ryan Cashman '05:

As soon as I saw the opportunity to write in with memories of Fr. K, I knew I absolutely had to take advantage.

I have literally known Fr. K from the day I was born - January 28th - as we share a birthday! At the time, my dad, Tom Ryan '76, was working in the Development Office at Holy Cross and my family was living on City View Street, just two houses down from what is now Ciampi. He knew Fr. K well as they worked just one floor apart in O'Kane Hall, so my dad was really excited to tell him that his daughter was born on his birthday. Throughout my childhood, I referred to Fr. K as my "birthday buddy," and we exchanged cards and he always sent my dad home with candy in a communion wafer box!!

We continued our annual correspondence until I became a student at Holy Cross, and then we got to celebrate our birthday on campus together. We were joined by a classmate of mine, Maggie Fontana, who also shared January 28th as her birthday and whose dad was also very close with Fr. K. Fr. K always remarked how special it was that two of his close friends had daughters on his birthday - and that we both ended up at Holy Cross - and good friends at that! I had the chance to take his Age of Jackson class, where I really learned how to write as a historian and think critically about past and current events. During our senior year, Maggie and I were both honored at the Varsity Club Athletic Awards night, and we took a January 28th picture with Fr. K. (I'm pretty sure Maggie's mom, Mary Pat Fontana sent in the photo!) He kept that picture on his desk thereafter because he said it always made him smile.

After we left Holy Cross, Maggie and I both stayed connected with Fr. K and he presided at both of our weddings - Maggie's in '06 and mine more recently in '15. How blessed we both were to be born on the birthday of such a great man. I had the opportunity to visit with Fr. K in Weston this Thanksgiving, and I brought two cupcakes. I figured if he could send out Christmas cards early, there was no reason we couldn't celebrate our birthday a few months in advance! January 28 will be bittersweet this year, but I know he'll be sending his well wishes and prayers our way, and I will absolutely be thinking of my birthday buddy.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to write into the magazine. I'm sure you'll be overwhelmed with responses, so thanks for taking the time to read mine.

John Carter, Professor Emeritus of Economics:

Here is an excerpt from an email that I sent to Tony before he passed away:

I remember sitting on the CTP when you came up for tenure.  Dave O’Brien spoke with such warm feeling about your “pastoral qualities.” Of course, Dave had a wonderful ease with words, and he captured your essence for me that day. Closer to my own experience, I remember you mostly from that sacred of sacred places – yes, the men’s locker room. First, your standard greeting, “Ah, the cream of the Economics Department!” Nothing wrong with a regular dose of flattery, even knowing it has no basis in fact. And second, your coming through the door with a Santa cap on your head, explaining that this was how you greeted your students when they arrived for their final exam. The memory makes me smile, as it will for scores of students throughout their lives.

You are a good man, Tony.  I will remember you ever so fondly.  I wish you peace, courage, and a satisfied mind in your remaining time on this side.

Charley Polachi '75:

Fr. K served as my advisor on a Special Studies program in the spring of 1975 just before I graduated. Only seven years older than me and not yet completely done with his Jesuit preparation (ordained in 1979) we had a great time together. I enjoyed his sense of purpose and sense of humor. He initially thought I was Polish due to my surname – I think he was disappointed when I told him it was Italian. A great man, a great son of Holy Cross. Peace.

Mary Pat Fontana P05:

Tony Kuzniewski has been a long, long time friend of my husband's and mine. In fact, John entered the Jesuits with Tony years ago. My husband left after several months, but we've been good friends with Tony over the years as well as his late sister, who lived close to us. We were even at his first mass in Milwaukee, WI years ago. There are many good stories of this wonderful man and all his generosity and friendship.

Caroline Kane '11:

My fiancé and I wanted to share some thoughts in honor of Father K.

Peter Laub and I are alumni of the class of 2011. We are engaged and will be married at the Chapel on May 20, 2017. Father K was going to be our presider and we met with him in September, just before he learned of his diagnosis, to plan our wedding. We wanted to share how grateful we were for the time that we were able to spend with him, and the blessings he shared with us while planning for our wedding. We know he will be with us on our wedding day, and forever in our hearts.

Tim Donovan:

Father K taught me how to write. I had him for American Themes freshman year. He was a straight shooter with high expectations while being very supportive. He helped me tremendously as a student and person. He and Father Ford had the biggest impact on me during my four years at HC. RIP Father K.

Suzanne Morrissey:

What a lovely, kind man. And what a loss for all who knew him, especially his friends and students in the Holy Cross community.

Last year, when Fr. K heard that we at Holy Cross Magazine were trying to help a young man propose to his girlfriend, a fellow Crusader, in the very classroom where they first met taking one of Fr. K's history courses, he made time to show up for the surprise proposal and then gave a blessing to the newly engaged couple. It was certainly a moment we'll all remember. Rest in peace, kind man.

Corey Welford:

Father K was an incredible teacher and mentor. I was lucky enough to have him as a professor in my first semester, and he really taught me how to be a college student. I made sure to take two more of his classes after that. When I think of why Holy Cross is such a special place, Father K is right at the top. He was a special person that so many of us were blessed to know, and I want to wish his family my condolences – they should know how beloved he was by so many and how thankful we are to have known him.

Nick Washburn:

Father K was an instrumental part of supporting the men’s lacrosse team as chaplain, particularly through the tragic passing of our teammate John Price. He will be sorely missed and was a great man. RIP Father K.

Mark Murray ’78:

So sad to hear the news of Fr. Kuzniewski’s passing. Having enjoyed his American Immigration class, first taught back in 1977-78, I remember him for his exceptional teaching and passion for history. Through books and countless personal stories, he brought to life in the classroom what immigration and assimilation of many cultures meant to both our immigrants and our country. His perspectives on the topic resonate with me even more today than ever. Thank you Fr. K. RIP

Thomas Dutzer ’90:

Thoughts and prayers for the passing of Fr. Kuzniewski. He brought a quiet commitment to his teaching at Holy Cross and I’m proud to have learned a great deal in his classes. RIP

Patrick Bieser:

Fr. Tony (as we called him) had another life outside of Holy Cross. For the past 40 years, he was the Chaplin for Boy Scout Troop 61 in Millwaukee, WI — his other home town. He grew up here, attending Mother of Good Counsel parish and school, and became a member of the 25th Eagle Scout of Troop 61 in 1962. Fr Tony loved camping, fishing, hiking, and being outdoors. Every year for as long as we can remember he would take a few days off in late July to travel with the troop to our summer camp in northern Wisconsin. He would offer Mass on Sunday morning on the bluff overlooking Jag Lake — delivering a homily perfectly tuned to teen age boys. In the evening he would tell spine tingling ghost stories at the scout campfire. You could hear a pin drop as he wove his tale, and sometimes the ending would be so unexpected scouts would jump in surprise. Did anyone at Holy Cross ever hear his joke about Ollie winning the toilet brush at the church breakfast? Fr. Tony was our friend, our inspiration, our teacher, our fountain of wisdom, our role model, and our mentor. We loved him and will treasure all the goodness he brought into the world.

Deborah Dunn ’85:

In reply to Patrick Bieser: Patrick, thank you so much for that post. It is a beautiful window into another part of Fr. K than the life on the HC campus. So great to be able to see him touching so many lives all around the country–specially with the Scouts and Wisconsin that he so loved!

Brad Desmarais:

Excellent classes were just the beginning with Father K. He was so involved, always so present at Holy Cross events, Masses, sports, meals, even the pub sometimes. He was always ready to chat and in these moments he inserted his amusing wisdom into my life. He was brilliant as a professor, due in equal parts to his command of the material and his comfort and rapport with students. But his social commentary, his humor, his off-the-cuff philosophical reflections were just as meaningful to me and, I am sure, many, many others.

Andrew Tourtelotte:

Father K was a living example and showed us how to be men and women for others. He was at the height of his abilities while he led us during a five-day silent retreat in the fall of 1992. In addition to introducing us to some of the principles of the Spiritual Exercises, he also had the unenviable task to making sure Father Joe Labran didn’t overtax himself. He handled it all with grace, patience and love.

Jess Bailot:

I had the pleasure of sitting in on Father K’s “Lincoln and his Legacy” course. There was something about Father K and the way he so passionately made history come alive that I knew I had to be a part of the Holy Cross community. He truly was a wonderful part of the Holy Cross Community and he will be missed. May he rest in peace.

Ben Ticho ’68:

Fr. K was truly a man for others. I first met him in 2000 after the untimely death of John Price, newly elected captain of the lacrosse team. Under Fr. K’s guidance all John’s teammates that year and ever since dedicated themselves as Big Brothers. Whether roaming the sidelines at football,or lacrosse or urging on the basketball teams, he always had kind words (and great stories) for all. He will truly be missed.

Matthew Keating '86:

We will all miss Fr. Kuzniewski so much. He had such a wonderful spirit about him. I am a member of the class of 1986 and took urban history with him. We studied the Industrial Revolution and actually visited the looming factories in Lowell, Massachusetts. He taught us why cities were designed in specific patterns. Washington, D.C. being a copy of Paris, which is concentric from the center. The grid of New York City and many others. Just an exceptional teacher and wonderful spirit. RIP. Father K. clearly illustrated the exceptional worth of an education at the College of the Holy Cross.

Mike Hennessey, ’64:

I was honored to be in attendance last April at the naming of Kuzniewski Field and deeply moved to be on the field during the dedication. As a former lacrosse player in the early 60’s, I did not know Fr. Kuzniewski, but had the opportunity to meet him prior to the game. I was very much impressed with the interest he showed in me, his kindness and his deep love for the College, its students and athletes. I am grateful for the brief time I spent with Fr. Kuzniewski and for opportunity to stand in this great man’s shadow. Rest in peace Fr. K.

Rebecca Peil:

As I was reading Fr. K’s obituary, my 7yo daughter walked in the room, frustrated to tears that she couldn’t make a perfect Christmas tree drawing. Right then & there, I passed along the lesson Fr. K taught me 20 years ago on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius: “Don’t worry about being perfect; just be good.” It was a life lesson I’ve never forgotten, and now, through his death, he is passing his wisdom a generation further. Thank you, Fr. K, and may peace be with you & your family.

Tom Gordon '08:

Fr. K was Holy Cross for me. He had such a brilliant command of history, and was so good at making things from American history relevant to his students. He was funny, caring, and a role model. I was inspired to do Teach for America after taking Age of Jackson and then Lincoln & His Legacy back to back, and had the good fortune to stay in touch with him as I taught history in Kansas City. I was blessed to have him as the officiant at my wedding last October, and know that he made that ceremony even more special. He will be missed greatly.

Ann Farrell '91:

Father K embodied what Holy Cross was to me. I was a history/ premed major and took almost all of his classes. He possessed all the qualities of a scholar and a teacher. He must have used a box of red pens up correcting my papers. He told me that if you can’t write a proper sentence, it doesn’t matter how much education you have because no one will be impressed. Very good advice that followed me through Boston College Law and my twenty-plus years of practice since then. As a member of the Jacksonian Society, I have fond memories of toasting the union at the pub with Father K. I have enjoyed my three years on the alumni board with him and regret my daughter Erin ’19 won’t have the opportunity to learn from Father K. A soft- spoken gentleman, he will be greatly missed.

Fred Bunsa ’87:

I just had to pause and take a moment to offer a prayer for Father K upon reading the news of his death. I never had Father K as a teacher, but while discerning the priesthood in junior and senior year I knew I needed a spiritual director to help me navigate such an important (and counter-cultural) decision. As I listen to the many different Jesuits preach their homilies while at HC, something about Fr K’s intellect and spirituality told me to ask him for help. I’ll never forget his surprised little smile and reply when I asked him if he would be willing to assist me in this big discernment. He said, “I would be happy to accompany you…but I am NOT going to tell you what to do!” (He never let anyone take the easy way out.)

To this day, there are numerous insights and comments he offered to me over my time at HC that still jump into my mind and heart when facing a particular decision or challenge. I am grateful to God for the life of Fr K and I am grateful to him for being such a rare combination of priest, teacher, guide and friend. He will be missed.

Gerry McKeon, S.J. '76:

Tony was a dear friend — First when I was a student at Holy Cross. Then when he recruited me to come as a Chaplain from 1999-2003. Tony was always a great support. He loved Holy Cross. He loved being a Jesuit. He was a good and faithful servant of God. And he asks us not to grieve his entrance into eternal life. Instead he says we should listen to the prophet Zechariah in Luke 1:78 — Look out for the tender mercy of our God by which the daybreak from on high will visit us to shine on those who sit in darkness and death’s shadow to guide our feet into the path of peace.’

Thank you Fr. Tony — for your friendship and brotherhood, for your giftedness as a teacher and guide, for your faithfulness to God — and for your journeying with Jesus on this earthly pilgrimage. Now he leads you to the Father! AMDG always.

Shannon Handley '95:

Father K entered my life when I was very much “impressionable like wax.” He was inspiring in the classroom and dynamic around our Caro Street dinner table, where he often broke bread with me and my Crusader sisters. What I remember most about Father K was his advocacy for women and the importance of becoming a person for others. I carry the lessons he taught me, every day, in my own classroom. Father will be deeply missed, but always remembered.

Jill D’Urso ’04:

It is with great sadness that I hear of Father K’s passing. His was one of my favorite classes I took at Holy Cross–American Urban History. Father K taught me a tremendous amount not just about history, but about writing. He was one of the first people to tell me I had a talent for writing–he even called it a “gift from God,” and he encouraged me to pursue it seriously, which I’ve done from then on. He will be missed.

Patrick ’01:

Fr. K – you are one of the people that had a lasting impact on my life and are synonymous with my time on The Hill. You were a true man for others and you challenged all of us to see, think and feel better, be better, and do better. You will be missed but not forgotten.

Tom Pelt:

Fr. Tony loved the outdoors. One of his passions was fishing. He and I went to Canada numerous times. He loved being in the open air, even if fishing was slow. I remember him battling and catching several large northern along with numerous walleye and bass. He also was a great cook and seemed to enjoy it.

Fr. Tony and I grew up in scouting together. He was the celebrant at my wedding. He was quite nervous because we were his first wedding. He wore his scout vestments that day. His first Mass was actually the day after our wedding. Fr. Tony was a great friend. I will miss him dearly.

Sloane Burns ’15:

Fr. K was one of the friendliest people I met at HC. Every time I would walk into Stein I, along with every other student, was greeted by his smiling face and a fun fact. As the HC historian, he never failed to have a legend up his sleeve. I was especially blessed to have him as my spiritual director on the spiritual exercises my senior year. Finally, the simple fact of shared Polish heritage allowed us to have a special connection during my time on the hill. I will miss the polish greetings and cultural stories. RIP Fr. K you will be dearly missed by me and all my fellow HC family students & alums. Thank you for your love, kindness, smiles, jokes and knowledge that you bestowed upon us.

Benjamin Howe:

Fr. Kuzniewski was a wonderful professor and a favorite of mine during my time at The Hill. He inspired us to learn more about our personal history, which I will always appreciate. His assignment to connect with a relative who had immigrated got me closer to my grandfather, which was a true blessing. May peace be with you and your family during this time.

Jim Sparkes ’71:

If the measure of a life well lived can be measured by the reflection of love and gratitude by the many whom he/she has touched throughout the years, then Tony Kuzniewski shines as bright as any star in the universe. I am blessed to have had him in my life and that of my family. May God grant him peace for his life well lived.

Joseph M. O’Donnell ’66:

We became friends in 1966 while he was in graduate school at Harvard, and I, at Clark U. We visited at Cambridge. MA and he came to visit Worcester for his first time to reciprocate. On this visit, we walked from Clark to Saturday Mass at St Joseph Memorial Chapel at Holy Cross. It was his visit to campus, and later he wrote how little did he imagine then how much of his later life he would spend there. Our friendship was rekindled in later years with our mutual Marquette friend; he visited me at my home and I with him at HC many times more recently,

Today I sat in the same pew where I was assigned in 1962 for obligatory mass attendance and assisted (voluntarily) for his funeral send off, staving my shedding tears for the loss on companionship of my friend.

Elizabeth Tomaszewski:

I called him “cousin.” I attended the Memorial Mass last evening at Mother of Good Counsel with Troop 61 in Milwaukee. There were many photos and films of a lifetime he spent with the scouts, and his most influential role as chaplain. He was always happy and beaming. He was such an adornment to our wonderful family. I shall miss his luster and spiritual guidance. As an icon in our Busha’s house once read Spia-z-Bogiem (Sleep with God.). His father would often correct my pronunciation. In the year of Divine Mercy “Jesus I trust in you” has always been your example and way. I know your guidance has always been with and continues to be with me.

Rachel Duncker:

In his final email to his Civil War seminar students upon the conclusion of the semester, Father K closed out his email with some words and a Lincoln quote (of course) that seem particularly fitting right now:

" 'I do the very best I can,' said Lincoln; 'and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won't amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference.’

"The end brought him out all right. My wish for all of you.”

It was our wish for you, too, Father K. And if the legacy of thousands of students who benefited from your lessons and your guidance is any indication, the end brought you out all right as well. Rest in peace, Father K.

Melanie McCue:

I loved how Fr. K would end Mass. The congregation would say "Thanks be to God" and he would say "Thanks be to you". It was a great pick me up, especially at Tuesday night Masses in the Mary Chapel. Rest in Peace, Father.

Kylene Sierkowski Lockey:

Fr. K celebrated our wedding mass at Holy Cross 13 yrs ago (Kylene Sierkowski Lockey '02 & David Lockey '00). He is truly an inspiring man whose spirit will live on forever in the hearts of those he touched.

Kevin Malloy:

While the community at Holy Cross referred to him as Father K, we here in Milwaukee where he grew up knew him as Father Tony and as the chaplain of our Boy Scout Troop (BSA Troop 61 of Milwaukee) since his ordination. I have many fond memories of him from the past 35 years or so. He was truly a "man for others."

Jim McCann:

"Our Federal Union... It must be preserved." - Andrew Jackson I will forever associate this quote with Fr. K. I admired his humor, and his "Age of Jackson" classes helped deepen my appreciation for our country and its leaders during a time of political and civil unrest. Sad to hear this news - he was a compassionate man, an exemplary priest, and a wonderful professor.

Samantha Tringali Howie:

What a loss. Another amazing Jesuit who influenced so many of us. I can still hear my roommates go on and on about his history class. I wish I had been able to have him as a professor, but his warm presence around campus was undeniable. Truly a part of HC's heart and soul. I hope his loved ones find joy in knowing the huge impact he has had. May he rest in eternal peace.

Sean A. Murphy:

Fr. K was always teaching. I fondly remember road trips with the lacrosse team, and the many long conversations he'd moderate. On those trips, I probably learned more about true faith, service, sacrifice, and how to take a joke than any other time. RIP Fr. K.

Christine Olson Owens:

I loved Father K. While I didn't have the opportunity to take a class with him, I remember well so many of his homilies that taught me something, or simply touched my soul. One in particular often comes to mind, where he preached from the altar about what having an SSI ("shitty self image") can do to drive one away from Christ. He gave us all many reasons to love ourselves, and shared ways to rid ourselves of our SSI forever. May his soul rest forever in peace.

Frederick Doyle:

If there's one thing missing from his obituary, it's that Father K had an amazing sense of humor. There are two stories from his homilies that have stayed with me over the last few years.

Once, on the second leg of a ten-hour bus ride somewhere in Canada, there was a little old lady who only spoke French sat across the aisle from him. She had brought a bag of candies to eat on the way. When she saw a man wearing the white collar, she asked him: "Catholique?" He couldn't say much to carry on a conversation, but he did nod his head yes, and the woman handed him a piece of candy. Father K told us that he had never been so happy to be Catholic.

The other story is about a young couple who asked him to be the priest at their wedding. They had been Holy Cross students. When the groom first started dating his future bride, he wasn't sure how to approach her, so he asked her if she would go to Mass with him. Father K gave the homily at that service, and the couple told him that it would mean a lot if he would do a Mass for them again. Father K was really taken aback. He told us, "I had always thought that people came to church to pray." But I think the point, and what I took away from his story, is that: no, they come for communion. RIP.

Diane Medeiros Fisher:

Fr. K was a kind and thoughtful sounding board for my son when he was in great turmoil. With my son far from home, it gave me such a relief to know that he had Fr. K to talk to! God Bless you Father!

Brian Scollard:

Father K was an amazing chaplin and a loyal friend to the lacrosse program. He and Coach Mike McCaffrey helped navigate our 2000 team through the tragic loss of John Price. We could have not have had two greater individuals help guide us through that incredibly dark period. Father K was a gentle, supportive and steady presence to us all on and off the field. We were all lucky that we came to know such a remarkable soul. God has welcomed him home.

James Hayes:

I had the pleasure of living with Tony for sixteen years. He was a wonderful Jesuit, a devoted brother, a faithful friend, a distinguished scholar, a compassionate priest, an effective preacher, and an impressive disciple of Jesus. May he rest in peace.

Katie Boland:

Father K is one of the reasons why I am a high school history teacher today. He was an amazing professor and an amazing man. I am so sorry to hear this.

Matthew Joseph McDonough:

I am so saddened to read of Father K's passing. I was a history major who loved his courses and benefitted from his advice at important moments in my four years at Holy Cross. When finishing my senior thesis on the Boy Scouts of America, Father K gave me his Boy Scout books that he studied from when he became an Eagle Scout. I still have them and look forward to passing them on to my son when he becomes a Boy Scout. RIP Father K. You will be remembered fondly by many.

Katie Hauser:

I am sorry to hear this. I loved my class with Father K and his documentation of Holy Cross history fascinated me. Maura Kaveney Senneff, wasn't your brother close to him? Remember scrambling through the snow freshman year to hand in the papers we were up all night writing for Father K?

Ryan Serravalle:

I am saddened by this news. I remember Fr. K with our basketball team and all the travels we shared. A wonderful man with a big heart! Thank you Fr. K for everything. You will be missed and never forgotten!

Caitlin Griffin Rigby:

Father K said my wedding Mass at the Holy Cross chapel almost 5 years ago. He was a wonderful, kind man who will be missed.

Kate Grandjean:

Such a loss. He was an exceptionally kind soul, whose dedication to his students was truly inspiring. Father K, you will be very missed.

Debora Cain:

I do not have the words for all he was to Holy Cross...such a cherished member of our community Thank You Father K......you will be remembered with much gratitude.....

Allison Sherlock Simpson:

He was such a kind, gentle soul...so sorry to hear this news.

Faith Cuenin:

Fr. K was an amazing person and professor. I will always remember his kindness.

Mary Brigham:

He contributed so much to so many . Rest in peace, Fther Kuzniewski.

Kelly Courter Hudgins:

The photo of him praying with and among the fine young men in purple that he mentored speaks volumes. He lived his life bringing the love of Jesus forward and present to those boys, who in turn, passed that love on. Thank you Fr. K. your presence was felt, even all the way to Seattle. Peace Forever.

Paul V. Murphy:

Sorry to hear this. Peace to him and all at the Cross.

Patrick Rodenbush:

Father K was one of a kind. His love of history was infectious. His generosity & passion for teaching left an indelible mark on so many.

Chris Hayden:

His "Age of Jackson" and "Lincoln & his Legacy" classes helped me understand and love American politics. Lucky to have learned from him.

WL:
His humility, kindness and teachings were exemplary. RIP Father K.

Dolly:
RIP Father K. I've learned so much from you inside and outside of the classroom. Your lessons will always stay with me.

Tim Hanlon:

A great man..a life well lived. So many other lives touched, enriched because of him. Rest now in the sweet glow of God's love, Father K.

Marissa McDermott:

Fr K invited us to hand-sign work if we were proud of it. Lesson: be proud of what u create, but only if it truly deserves it.

Joseph Terranova:

A smart, kind, warm man full of grace, humor and compassion.  Truly a man for others.

Andrew Cook:
 
I told my aunt & uncle alums that Fr. K was my Gateways speaker for Holy Cross - they remembered when THEY had him in the 1980s. HC legend.

Daniel Klinghard:

A great teacher, a great admirer of Lincoln, a man of tremendous faith, and a man whose life story calls out for imitation. I will miss him.

Eileen O'Hara:

Sad to hear of the death of my favorite professor at Holy Cross... Almost 30 years later, I can put myself in his classroom & hear his voice.