HARTFORD – Father Denis A. Kolumber, 74, a member of the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette, Province of Mary, Mother of the Americas, died on May 16, 2014, at St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center.
He was born in East Douglas, Mass., on Aug. 15, 1939, the son of the late John and Mary (Gressek) Kolumber. He attended schools in East Douglas and the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester before studying at La Salette Seminary in Altamont, N.Y. He entered the La Salette Novitiate in Bloomfield on July 1, 1960, and made first profession of vows on July 2, 1961.
Father Denis completed his priestly studies at La Salette Seminary in Ipswich, Mass., and was ordained to the priesthood on May 27, 1967, at the former La Salette Shrine Church in Ipswich. He taught for three years at the La Salette Junior Seminary in Cheshire before leaving for the La Salette mission in Argentina, where he served for 17 years in parishes in Cordoba, Santa Fe, Yofre Norte and Las Termas.
Father Denis was named co-director of the formation house in Cordoba before being elected to two terms as regional superior.
In 1988, he returned to the United States and was named pastor of Immaculate Conception Parish in Hartford. Later that year, he was a pastoral associate in Smyrna, Ga. He later assisted at parishes in Canton and Cartersville, Ga., and in Lufkin, Texas.
As his health declined in 2008, Father Denis moved to La Salette Hartford House. In recent years, he had resided at St. Mary Home in West Hartford.
In addition to his La Salette confreres, Father Denis is survived by a sister, Mary Lamontagne of East Douglas; a niece and two nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial was concelebrated on May 21 in the La Salette Hartford House chapel. Burial in Mount St. Benedict Cemetery in Bloomfield followed.
Contributions in his memory may be made to: Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette Retirement Fund, 915 Maple Ave., Hartford, CT 06114-2330.