For nearly 30 consecutive years, Most Precious Blood Parish in Angola had priests accused of molesting boys assigned to work at the church and its elementary school.
But lawsuits filed Tuesday allege a former female teacher, Dianna Vacco, sexually abused two girls who were in her Most Precious Blood School class decades ago.
An Angola woman’s lawsuit accuses Vacco of having sexual contact with her on at least 50 occasions when she was 10 to 13 years old, from about 1976 to 1980.
An Ellicottville woman’s lawsuit accuses Vacco of having sexual contact with her on at least 200 occasions when she was 11 to 15 years old, from 1980 to 1985.
The cases allege Vacco had sex with the girls in New York State and Florida, spending time with them at Vacco’s home, Vacco’s parents' home, in her car, and at Vacco’s home in Florida.
The lawsuits name as defendants Dianna Vacco, the Buffalo Diocese, Most Precious Blood Parish and Most Precious Blood School.
Vacco, who is also known as Dianna Mroz, did not respond to a message from The Buffalo News seeking her comment. Vacco resides in Florida, where she retired after teaching in the Palm Beach County School District from 1999 to 2017, according to that district. She has a Florida teaching certificate valid through 2022, according to the state’s Department of Education website. Vacco has also been associated with several Florida businesses that promote professional and youth dancing.
Boston attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who is representing the women suing Vacco, declined to comment on the cases.
At Most Precious Blood Parish, one priest after another who worked there between 1967 and 1997 was later accused of abusing children.
Two deceased priests – Fred Fingerle and J. Grant Higgins – have been named in Child Victims Act lawsuits that allege they abused children they met at Most Precious Blood Parish.
The Rev. John P. Hajduk, who served in Most Precious Blood Parish, has been accused in a lawsuit of molesting a child he met at another Buffalo Diocese church.
Story topics: Child Victims Act