ROCKLAND — Roger A. Brochu, age 82, passed away Monday, June 17, 2019, at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, of complications after a partial hip replacement and kidney failure.
Born in Chisholm June 20, 1936, he was the son of Frank X. and Irene (Yokell) Brochu.
Roger is survived by three brothers, Rene Brochu and his wife, Beverly, of Jay, Gerard Brochu and his wife, Pauline, of Livermore Falls, Raymond Brochu of Brighton, Mass.; a sister, Rita Brochu Melendy, and her husband, Ronald, of Auburn; 26 nieces and nephews; numerous great-nieces and -nephews and great-great-nieces and -nephews.
Other than his parents, his brother Francis Brochu, and sisters Yvonne Dunham and Lillian Nichols predeceased Roger.
Roger graduated from Jay High School in 1958 and from the Auburn School of Commerce in 1960. He taught business courses in Eagle Lake, was inducted into the military and did his Army basic training at Fort Ord., CA., where he gave English classes to military personnel and worked as a chaplain’s assistant. He was later stationed in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and again served as a full chaplain assistant for all the Catholic and other troops at the Kleber Chapel Church in Kaiserslautern. His language abilities helped Germans, French, Americans and Arabs to socialize.
He was a longtime dedicated communicant of St. Bernard's Catholic Church in Rockland where he served as a Lector and Eucharistic Minister. He was a soloist for numerous funerals and was a member of the choir and a 4th degree member of the Knights of Columbus.
Roger was a Graymoor Friar of the Atonement in Peekskill Garrison, N.Y., for a brief period. He left the order to do evangelization on the streets of New York, where he lived for 33 years, and would frequently take in a young mother and her fatherless babies until they could get started on their own. Over the years, numerous homeless, young men were also welcomed to live in his home until they also could get new starts on life; as well as becoming friends to their extended families. In other words, his door was open to anyone in need. He even brought some to Maine, for a vacation when he visited his parents.
They were all adopted by him, in his heart.
He participated in numerous prayer groups, one of which was Saint Teresa of Calcutta's order; and was fortunate to have had the opportunity to meet Mother Teresa numerous times when she visited her order, in Bronx, N.Y. Other world renown people whom he had the opportunity to meet to whom he became a friend were Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen and Father Walter Cizek who had had been a 23 year prisoner in Siberia and who is being processed for Canonization by the Catholic Church. He considered Cardinal Terence Cook, pastor of St. Patrick’s Cathedral (N.Y.C.) and who is also being processed for canonization for Sainthood, a friend. Father Benedict Groeschel who is well known to all EWTN followers was also a longtime friend.
Roger was a personal attendant to Seer Brother Ovid Alexis Poirier, S.S.S. while he was a patient at the Cancer – Calvary Hospital in the Bronx.
While living in New York, he served as Sales Advertising and Promotion Export Manager for Laster International, Inc. This employment required him to translate in many languages, and he became proficient in communicating with foreigners. In later years he was often asked by police, doctors and foreign tourists to translate for them.
Throughout his lifetime, he enjoyed writing, composing prayers, hymns and songs. He loved acting in musical plays and also played the piano, and knew how to enjoy life to the fullest.
The family would like to thank his Personal Care Physician, Robert N. Merrill of Rockport, the doctors and nurses in the ICU at Central Maine Medical Center for their compassionate care, especially two very special RN angels, Lyse and Heather.
Visiting hours will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, June 20, at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland. A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 1 p.m. Friday, June 21, at St. Bernard's Catholic Church, 150 Broadway, Rockland. The Rev. Robert Vaillancourt will officiate.
Interment will be at 10:00 am, Thursday, June 27, 2019, in Holy Cross Cemetery, Livermore Falls, Maine, the Rev. Paul Dumais will officiate. A reception and sharing will follow.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Bernard’s Soup Kitchen, 150 Broadway, Rockland, ME 04841.