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The Rev. Dominic G. Valentino, 81, former pastor of St. Anthony's Church in downtown Buffalo, died Sunday (June 24, 2001) in Phoenix after a long illness.

A native of Chicago, Father Valentino lived in the Buffalo area from 1952 to 1965.

Ordained in Rome into the Pious Society of St. Charles in 1947, he came to St. Anthony's as an assistant pastor in 1952 and went on to become pastor there in 1960.

In 1965, he was transferred to Washington, D.C., and in 1967 to Joliet, Ill. He was appointed superintendent of religious education in 1975, and from 1977 to 1995, he served as pastor of Visitation Parish in Elmhurst, Ill.

He retired to Phoenix, where he lived with his family until his death.

His time and efforts in Buffalo were dedicated not only to the local Italian-American community, but also to employees of downtown businesses and agencies, particularly City Hall.

His many honors included being named Citizen of the Year in Elmhurst in 1980. In 1992, on the 45th anniversary of his ordination, the mayor of Elmhurst declared "Father Valentino Week" in the city. Also, a recreation center he built at Visitation Parish bears his name.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. today in Visitation Church, Elmhurst. Burial will be in Mount Carmel Cemetery, Hillside, Ill.


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