It’s been almost 20 years since Father Ray Brennan’s passing, but his memory still lives on in the hearts of his old friends in all parts of the world.
One of them is Ron Small who lived in Pattaya 40 year ago before moving back to the United States. Ron was in town early this month and felt that he wanted to bring his old friends together to remember Fr. Ray, so he hosted an old style Rotary fellowship party on May 1.
Rotarians from all the 7 clubs in Pattaya gathered at the Fr. Ray Foundation premises in front the revered priest’s statue which stands at the entrance to the Mahatai Pattaya Convention Center to reminiscence and celebrate the life of a great and holy man.
Father Sukhum Thanasingh C.Ss.R. President of the Redemptorist Foundation for People with Disabilities welcomed the guests before Ron spoke of the purpose of his visit and the get together. Ron said that 40 years ago, when computers were still in its infancy, he suggested to Fr. Brennan that he set up a Computer Science school to teach young people something new that would one day takeover the way we live, work and play.
From those humble beginnings, today the Pattaya Redemptorist Technological College for People with Disabilities is considered to be one of the best schools in Thailand for teaching Computer Business in English, Information Technology and Electronic Systems.
Ron promised that every year from now on, even after he is no more, a party will be held around the same time, when Rotarians will be invited to come together to remember Fr. Ray and celebrate his life.
Representatives of the Rotary Club of Pattaya, Jomtien-Pattaya, Eastern Seaboard, Pattaya Marina, Phoenix Pattaya, Dolphin Pattaya International and Pattaya International attended this fun fellowship of remembrance.
Past District Governor Peter Malhotra who was Father Brennan’s friend and fellow Rotarian spoke briefly about him, saying that Fr. Ray was a member of the Rotary Club of Pattaya who also served as a president for one term. Fr. Ray was the recipient of the Paul Harris Fellow Award, the highest recognition that Rotary International can give to members and non-members who have contributed their lives in the service of mankind. He said Fr. Ray was loved by everyone who came to know him and even those who didn’t but had heard about his compassionate work for the orphans and handicapped children and adults in Thailand.
On behalf of the Fr. Ray Foundation, Fr. Sukhum Thanasingh presented a Certificate of Appreciation to an old friend and supporter, Jan Chris von Koss and another one for all the Rotary clubs in Pattaya to thank them for their support for the Fr. Ray Foundation throughout the years and for their indefatigable service to humanity.