MASSENA — Father Harry E. Giroux, 61, passed away early Monday evening, Feb. 13, 2012, at the Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center, Ogdensburg.
Father Giroux was born April 14, 1950, in Massena, a twin son of the late Harry E. Sr. and Patricia Munson Giroux. He attended Massena public and St. Mary's parochial schools. In 1968 he graduated from Holy Family High School. Following high school, Father attended St. John Fisher College in Rochester for one year before transferring to Wadhams Hall Seminary-College in August 1969 and graduating from there on May 28, 1972 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. In August 1972, he began theological studies and seminary formation at St. Mary's Seminary and University in Baltimore, Md., where he completed his studies in the spring of 1976 and was awarded a Master of Divinity degree.
On May 1, 1976, he, along with his twin brother, Father Garry, was ordained a Catholic priest by Bishop Stanislaus J. Brzana at St. Mary's Cathedral in Ogdensburg. His first priestly assignment was to Our Lady of Victory Church in Plattsburgh, where he served from June 1976 until June 1978. He was then assigned as the associate pastor of Holy Family Church in Watertown and also served as the campus ministry chaplain at Jefferson Community College, until being transferred in June 1983 to St. Alexander's Church in Morrisonville as the associate pastor. During his time in Morrisonville, he pursued and received his Master of Science degree in psychology from SUNY Plattsburgh, before being transferred to Canton in 1985.
As the pastor of St Thomas More Campus Parish in Canton from June of 1985 to June of 2000, he also served the campuses of St. Lawrence University and SUNY Canton. During his tenure in Canton, he taught college courses, facilitated the Big Brother/Big Sisters Program and served as the adviser to several fraternities and assisted with a variety of programs on both campuses. In June 2000, he was assigned as pastor of St. Joseph's Church in West Chazy. In July 2004, Father was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease. He continued to serve the St. Joseph's parish until his illness forced him to resign his pastorate in June 2006. He then went to reside with his brother, Father Garry, at St. Mary's Church in Potsdam until July 2008. Father resided with his sister in Cornwall, Ontario from August 2008 until February 2009 when he entered St. Joseph's Nursing Home.