Community Remembers Monsignor McCarthy

Community Remembers Monsignor McCarthy

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Firefighters led the procession for Monsignor Robert McCarthy Wednesday to the Church of the Holy Family in Watertown, where McCarthy served as pastor for 21 years. 

Family and friends gathered for his calling hours Wednesday evening. He died Saturday at the age of 99.

McCarthy dedicated his life to not only the altar, but to the community at large and the Watertown fire department.

"And was just kind of like the shepherd watching over the flock because we know that we've got some firefighters that need some guidance at times," city of Watertown Fire Chief Dale Herman said. "He was a real inspiration because he was a down-to-earth individual."

The procession was led by a rescue truck that was named after McCarthy for his dedication as fire department chaplain.

"A few years back, we named the rescue truck 'McCarthy' after Monsignor for all of his years  of dedication to not only this fire department, but the community as a whole," Herman said.

McCarthy also dedicated much of his time to the Sisters of St. Joseph's where he leaves a lasting legacy.

"It was always an experience to work for him and his energy and his involvement," Sister Jennifer Votraw said. "You never felt that he had time to sit on his heels and he didn't expect you to."

People at the calling hours said their final goodbyes to a man who always made the community his top priority.

"In his years of being a pastor, he would walk the streets and shake hands with everybody he met and was really well known in the community," his niece, Agnes Gwyn, said.

"He lived a full life," said Joanne Francher, another niece. "He had a bucket list and did everything he wanted to do."

There will be more calling hours for Monsignor McCarthy from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday.

His funeral mass will be held at noon at Holy Family Church. He will be laid to rest in Glenwood Cemetery in Watertown. 

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