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Deacon Wes Brush dies Print
Clergy obituaries
Friday, Nov. 05, 2010 -- 1:00 AM
Deacon Wes Brush

MADISON -- A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at St. Maria Goretti Church in Madison at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 18, for Deacon Wesley J. “Wes” Brush, Jr., who died on November 5 at St. Mary’s Care Center in Madison.

Visitation will preceded the Mass and after the Mass, family and friends were invited to an Irish celebration and remembrance of Deacon Brush at Brocach Irish Pub in Madison.

Born in New York City on February 29, 1920, he was the son of Wesley J. and Julia (Duggan) Brush. He attended Power Memorial Academy and graduated with a degree in business administration from Manhattan College.

He enlisted in the Army the day after Pearl Harbor, subsequently earned a commission at the Infantry School, and chose discharge in April 1946 with the rank of captain. Service included two years in the European Theater of Operations where he was attached to General Eisenhower’s staff.

Military honors include the Order of Leopold awarded by the government of Belgium, together with the Croix de Guerre, avec palme, grade de chevalier.

On March 2, 1946, he married Eleanor L. Miller in New York City.

His career was in Catholic publishing from 1946 until his retirement in 1988, initially with the Bruce Publishing Company of Milwaukee. Following the dissolution of Bruce, he was named executive editor of the Catholic Sun, the diocesan newspaper of Syracuse, N.Y.

In Syracuse, he served on several diocesan commissions and councils and was ordained in the first class of permanent deacons in 1978. Elected the first chairman of the deacon community, he was also appointed diocesan director of the program for the permanent diaconate.

In 1988, he retired from publishing and moved to Madison to be near family here. For three years, he acted as the executive secretary of the association of Wisconsin Catholic Schools until its dissolution. Memberships included the Catholic Press Association, the Religious Publishers Group, the Eastern Church Goods Guild, the Syracuse Interreligious Council, Knights of Columbus Council #4527, and the Serra Club of Madison.

Incardinated into the Diocese of Madison in 1996 by Bishop William H. Bullock, he was assigned as pastoral associate to St. Mary Parish in Pine Bluff and served there until his retirement from parish ministry in 1999. He was a member of the advisory board of the Catholic Herald and was active in the development of the permanent diaconate program for the diocese.

Survivors include his daughter, Elizabeth M. (Gerd) Petzke of Kelkheim, Germany, and son, Thomas H. Brush (Mary) of Madison. He was preceded in death by his wife, Eleanor; his parents; sisters, Elizabeth and Irene; and brother, John.

Remembrances may be sent to St. Mary’s Care Center of Madison. The Ryan Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 2418 N. Sherman Ave., 608- 249-8257, was in charge of arrangements.

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