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RIP Former Fenwick Principal/President Fr. Andrew Kolzow, O.P.

December 29, 2020

Fenwick has learned that Fr. Kolzow passed away peacefully on Christmas Eve at age 91.


Fr. Kolzow (1929-2020)

Fr. Andrew "Andy" Kolzow, O.P., former Fenwick Dean of Studies and Principal/President from 1969-71, passed away peacefully at age 91 late on Christmas Eve. Born in 1929 and originally from Downers Grove, IL, his funeral is planned for January 5, 2021, at St. Anthony of Padua Church in New Orleans with burial following immediately at Rosaryville Cemetery (Ponchatoula, LA).

A live stream of the funeral at 10 a.m. on Tuesday will be available on the parish's Facebook page.  

Alumnus Bob Chmiel '64 fondly recalls the Fenwick "angel who saved my life: Coming to Fenwick from 'the city,' it became obvious to me I was not as academically prepared as my fellow classmates," Chmiel says. "I struggled. Without my reaching out to him, he [Fr. Kolzow] came to me. He recognized my worry. I actually asked him to assist me in leaving Fenwick to attend St. Rita along with my cousins and friends. We 'cut a deal.' I was to do my best in the classroom and on the football field, and after a semester he would speak to my parents. In retrospect, he gave me an 'out.' I relaxed and did my best. I fell in love with Fenwick, and the rest is history. After one parent night, my Dad and I were driving home and he said, 'Bobby, you may never meet a saint, but Fr. Kolzow is close.'

"Later after college and the Army, I spoke to Fr. Kolzow about coming to Fenwick as a coach. He and Coach Lawless hired me on the spot. As years passed and I became a football coach at Michigan, we played in the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. Fr. Kolzow and the great Fr. Cumiskey, O.P. were both assigned to that area," Coach Chmiel continues. "I called and they invited [my wife] Anne, our one-year-old-daughter, Mary Pat, and me to a tour of the city. I cannot express what that day meant to me. I offered them tickets for the game, and they accepted. As I ran on the field with the Michigan team, I glanced to my right and there they sat. In my heart I felt as two 'Godfathers' proudly watching 'rascal,' their Godson.

"I am hurting, but my solace is I now have a saint in heaven to continue watching over me ... one great Dominican. Love you, Fr. Kolzow."

May the soul of our special Dominican priest, Fr. Andrew, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.



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