Brother Thomas James Ash, FSC, a former assistant dean at Saint Mary’s College of California, died on Saturday, June 23, 2012, after a brief illness. Brother James was born as Charles Thomas Ash on October 4, 1936, in Glendale, California. He received his religious habit on August 14, 1954, and made his final vows on August 7, 1961. He received a B.A. from Saint Mary’s in 1958 and devoted his life to educating and counseling students.
After serving as vice principal of De La Salle High School in Concord from 1969 to 1972, he was coordinator of student activities and director of housing at Saint Mary’s from 1972 to 1982. He later received an M.A. in 1986 and a Ph.D. in 1992 from the Professional School of Psychology in San Francisco and served at Saint Mary’s from 1991 to 1997, working in pastoral services and counseling. From 2007 to 2011, he served as Brother Director of the De La Salle High School Community in Concord.
Brother James is survived by his blood brother, Brother Martin Ash, FSC, the special projects coordinator for SMC’s Alumni Office, and his sister, Marguerite (Marge) Burke. He was pre-deceased by another sibling, Brother Warren Ash, FSC. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, July 3, 2012, at Mont La Salle, Napa, Calif. Viewing will be at 9:30 a.m., with a Mass to follow at 10:30 a.m. Burial will immediately follow the Mass, and all are invited to attend a luncheon in the banquet dining room.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to: Bishop Cummins Scholarship Fund, De La Salle High School, Advancement Office, 1130 Winton Drive, Concord, CA 94518. Notes and testimonials may be sent to the District Archives, Mont La Salle, 4405 Redwood Road, Napa, CA 94558.
Read the full obituary by the Contra Costa Times.