Loyola mourns sudden death of student

The Loyola Blakefield community is trying to recover after the death of junior Dennis Woolford in an auto accident Sept. 26.

Father Thomas A. Pesci, president of the school, said it has been an emotional week for students, faculty and alumni grieving a young man who was a soccer goalie for the Dons and kicker on their football team. Many are asking “why?” he said.

“I tell them I don’t have an answer,” Father Pesci said. “On this side of the grave there is no sensible answer. But, I do believe God will bring many great graces forth from this tragedy. We listen in Scripture when it says ‘God’s ways are our now ways,’ and that’s a hard thing to grasp. We really can’t understand it, but God does have a reason.”

Baltimore County police spokesperson Bill Toohey said that Dennis died after the BMW he was driving crossed a double yellow line in Jacksonville and collided with another teenager’s car. Although it was raining heavily Sept. 26, police had not determined the cause of the accident.

“These investigations are long and detailed,” Mr. Toohey said. “It’ll be three or four weeks before we really know what happened.”

The other teenager, driving a Jeep on Jarrettsville Pike was taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center with injuries that were not deemed “life-threatening” by Mr. Toohey.

A memorial fund was created through the school and a letter was sent home to parents of students to notify them of Dennis’ death.

A memorial service for Dennis was to be held Sept. 30 at the school’s performance gymnasium. Two Facebook Internet pages were created in his memory. A tribute page on the Baltimore Sun Web site had remembrances from friends and classmates directed at Dennis’ family.

One football teammate wrote “I miss him so much, but I’m sure it can’t compare. I wish your family the best and may God and Dennis stay with your family forever.”

The news reverberated throughout the Archdiocese of Baltimore. During a prayer at a Mass and concert held at The John Carroll School in Bel Air Sept. 28, worshippers were asked to keep the Woolford family in their thoughts.

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.