Patrick C. Dolan of the Bronx, New York passed away peacefully in his 97th year at his residence on Thursday, November 1, 2018.
Born in 1921 in East Harlem to Irish immigrants, Patrick “Pat” Dolan grew up in the Bronx, where he raised his own family and continues to reside. He fought for his country in World War II and went on to be an impassioned labor leader, community activist, and actor.
Since he was the oldest among seven brothers and sisters, Pat began working at the Horn and Hardart automat in lower Manhattan in 1938 to help his family through the Great Depression, until he was drafted into the Army four years later at the age of 20. Trained first as a mechanic in Mississippi, he studied chemical warfare and combat training at Camp Siebert, Alabama. While sailing for Gila, Sicily from Newport News, Virginia in January 1944, Pat’s ship broke down. This was a harrowing time for the ship’s passengers, who were traveling the Atlantic Ocean without any escorts. After many days alone at sea, destroyers arrived and helped the ship arrive safely in Italy 28 days after leaving port.
While serving on the Italian Peninsula in Rome, Pat caught three Italian men stealing. When he handed them over to a Captain from Massachusetts, the Captain ordered the men to dig their own graves. When the Captain ordered Pat, a private, to shoot them, Pat refused, sparing the men their lives.
In another city, Pat and two paratroopers saw an English soldier kick a little Italian girl who was digging through the trash for food. Enraged, Pat pulled his rifle out on the limey, threatening to shoot him if he kicked her again. Pat’s comrades also pulled their guns out, causing the man to flee.
In May 1945, Pat left Italy for Trinidad in preparation for the invasion of Japan, which was canceled as a result of Japan’s surrender in August. Pat was honorably discharged in early December of the same year.
Pat received the following awards and medals for his service:
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with One Bronze Battle Star (Rome-Arno)
American Campaign Medal
Good Conduct Medal
Honorable Service Lapel Button WWII
World War II Victory Medal
Pat worked for Consolidated Edison from 1946 until he started working for the Transit Authority in 1962. Very involved with the Transport Workers Union, he became a general organizer for over 6,000 employees before retiring in 1986.
Pat was appointed to Community Board 11 in 1993 as a Council Member Provenzano nominee. Around this time, he became an actor, serving as an extra in big-time productions which include but are not limited to movies such as Boomerang, Money Train, For Love of the Game, Mona Lisa Smile and The Interpreter, and TV shows such as Chappelle’s Show, Law & Order, and Sex and the City. In 2003, Pat became a member of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artist One Union.
A lifetime member of the VFW Gunhill Post 271, Pat continues to advocate for the rights of all veterans. He often attends the Public School 108 Tribute to Veterans event every year.
An active member of Saint Francis Xavier Church in Morris Park, Patrick is a devoted family man who has been married to his lovely wife Rita since 1955. Together, they have two daughters (Maureen and Deborah) and three grandchildren (Brian, Meaghan, and John).
Family and friends are invited to McNulty Funeral Home, Inc. 3006 Middletown Road Bronx, New York 10461 on Sunday, November 4, 2018 from 2:00 - 5:00 and 7:00 - 9:00 PM for visitation. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated for Patrick on Monday, November 5, 2018 at St. Francis of Xavier Church at 10:00 AM. Interment will follow at Calverton National Cemetery in Calverton, New York at 1:00 PM with military honors.
~ If you plan to attend the funeral mass on Monday, please arrive to McNulty Funeral Home, Inc. by 8:45 AM or at St. Francis Xavier Church by 10:00 AM ~