Fr. David Tobin, noted preacher, dies in Whittier

Funeral Mass was scheduled July 3 at St. Mary of the Assumption Church, Whittier, for Redemptorist Father David Tobin, 77, who died June 27 after a massive heart attack.

A tireless and enthusiastic preacher, Father Tobin maintained an active pace despite having had triple bypass heart surgery a year ago. Having served in preaching ministry for almost five decades, he was a well-known parish missionary in the Los Angeles area, encouraging Catholics “to find a good life through the Mass and the sacraments.”

“He was a great friend,” said Archbishop Emeritus John Quinn of San Francisco.  When his giant presence strode to the pulpit, parishioners knew they were in for a “courteous, kind and impressive” message, he said.

Born Feb. 15, 1937 in Fort Fairfield, Maine, David Tobin grew up in Ocean Beach, Calif., where the St. Joseph of Carondolet nuns made a lasting and loving impression on him. They may have inspired his love for statistics, which were peppered throughout almost every one of his conversations.  

He followed his brother and noted social activist, Redemptorist Father Joseph E. Tobin, C.Ss.R., into the seminary in 1951 (Father Joseph died in 2003). He was ordained as a Redemptorist priest on July 2, 1963, and taught and worked with young seminarians at Holy Redeemer College in Oakland (1965-68).

During this time, he ran an energy-packed summer camp on the Kenai Peninsula. “Families vied with each other to put their youngsters into the program,” remembered Father Don MacKinnon. “He also gave memorable spiritual missions at parishes in Anchorage and Juneau.” 

Father Tobin began his long preaching career in 1968 at St. Gerard Church in Great Falls, Montana. He then was assigned to St. Alphonsus Church in Fresno in 1970, and served as a missionary in California for the next 44 years, booking missions three years in advance.

“So many people are suffering needlessly,” he often said. “They need to hear the Good News: You have been redeemed by the death and resurrection of Jesus. You are a son or daughter of God because Jesus is alive and growing within you.”

Fr. David also promoted Liguorian magazine, and often mentioned missionaries working in Brazil, Thailand and Nigeria. He inspired one woman to join the United Farm Workers of Cesar Chavez, and another to join one of Mother Teresa’s foundations serving the poor throughout the world. His inspiring enthusiasm and effective preaching touched thousands of lives.

Milagros Solis Viterbo

Funeral Mass was celebrated June 26 at the Church of the Epiphany, San Francisco, for Milagros Solis Viterbo, 89, who died June 22 at her home in San Francisco. She was the aunt of Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Solis, San Pedro Region bishop. She is also survived by her two children and grandson. Condolence cards may be sent in care of the San Pedro Pastoral Region Office.

Carol Caputo

Funeral Mass was celebrated June 27 at St. Mary Church, Palmdale, for Carol Caputo, wife of Deacon Ed Caputo, who died June 24. Burial was at Good Shepherd Cemetery, Lancaster.

Fr. John Franck, C.PP.S., St. Agnes pastor

Memorial Mass was celebrated May 19 at St. Agnes Church in Los Angeles for Missionaries of the Precious Blood Father John Franck, 73, pastor, who died May 15.

Born in St. Henry, Ohio, he entered the Missionaries of the Precious Blood congregation in 1954 and was ordained on June 3, 1967. Following ordination, he served at St. James the Less Church, Columbus; Holy Name Church, Cincinnati; and St. Veronica Church, Hamilton. In the 1980s, he ministered in the leadership of his congregation, and he also served the Archdiocese of Cincinnati at St. Joseph’s Orphanage and with other projects.

In 1991, he moved to Northern California, where he ministered at St. Edward Church in Newark. He was then named co-pastor of St. Agnes Church in Los Angeles, serving there until 1998, when he was appointed pastor of Resurrection Church in Winter Garden, Florida. He returned as pastor to St. Agnes in Los Angeles in 2001, ministering there until his death.

His brother, Precious Blood Father James Franck, who presided at his May 22 Funeral Mass at St. Charles Center in Cartagena, Ohio, recalled Father John’s many gifts, including his compassion as a pastor, his administrative skills in running a parish and his musical and artistic talents.

Memorial donations may be made to the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, 431 E. Second St., Dayton, Ohio 45402.