HARTFORD – Father Peter D. Kohler of Hartford, 73, a member of the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette, Province of Mary, Mother of the Americas, died on June 28, 2014.
He was born on June 2, 1941, in St. Louis, a son of the late Dr. Eugene and Cecilia (Ryan) Kohler. After attending schools in St. Louis, he studied at the La Salette High School Seminary in Jefferson City, Mo. He began his novitiate on June 16, 1961, in Bloomfield and made first profession of vows on July 2, 1962. After completing his studies at the La Salette Seminary in Ipswich, Mass., he was ordained to the priesthood on May 25, 1968, in Jefferson City by Bishop Joseph Marling.
Father Kohler began his ministry at parishes in Sulphur, La., and later at parishes in Maplewood, Mo., and Berkley, Mich. He then served at the La Salette mission in Morondava, Madagascar, from 1971-76.
He provided La Salette community service as mission procurator from 1976-85 and served in administrative capacities as the provincial assistant, area coordinator and provincial secretary. He served on four provincial councils and was active in vocation and formation programs as well.
Father Kohler had resided in Hartford at the La Salette House at 86 New Park Avenue since 2011. In recent years, he had assisted the missions and charitable causes such as CFCA, known today as Unbound, as a spokesman.
Besides his La Salette confreres, Father Kohler is survived by a brother, La Salette Father Lawrence Kohler of Sulphur; a sister, Loretta Hein of Ballwin, Mo.; and many nieces and nephews and friends. He was predeceased by four brothers, John, Richard, Eugene and Father Joseph, a diocesan priest; and one sister, Betty.
Father Kohler has donated his body for use in medical education and research. A memorial Mass was celebrated July 2 in the chapel at Hartford House.
Contributions may be made in Father Kohler’s memory to the Missionaries of La Salette Retirement Fund, 915 Maple Avenue, Hartford, CT 06114-2330.