Weber Funeral Home - Allentown
502 Ridge Ave.
Allentown, PA 18102
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Richard O'Donnell

Richard O'Donnell Obituary
Richard C. O'Donnell, 87, of Allentown, PA, passed away Sunday, July 7, 2019. A native of Summit Hill, PA, he was a son of the late Lawrence and Sallie (McFadden) O'Donnell. He was preceded in death by his four siblings: his brother, Lawrence, and sisters, Martha, Anna Marie, and Mary.

Richard was a counselor and lecturer in the Lehigh Valley for over 30 years. A graduate of Villanova University, he earned his licentiate degree in Sacred Theology from the Gregorian University in Rome, Italy and a master's degree in Clinical Psychology from Fordham University in New York City. Richard also had done graduate work in Classical Languages at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., and doctoral studies at Teacher's College, Columbia University.

During the 1960's, Richard taught at Augustinian Academy in Staten Island, New York. Later on, he taught at Villanova, Biscayne and Barry Colleges in Miami, FL, Cedar Crest College in Allentown, PA, Northampton Community College in Bethlehem, PA, and, up to two years ago, Lehigh Carbon Community College in Schnecksville, PA, when he retired after 59 years of teaching.

Richard also hosted over 40 lecture/supper series at his home on 9th street in Allentown, through the Hortensius Academy, covering non-trivial topics from opera, to history, to psychology, philosophy, and spirituality.

For over 20 years, Richard's work was centered around drug and alcohol services in Lehigh and Northampton counties. He was a Program Director for the Halfway Home of Lehigh Valley and was Executive Director of the Lehigh Valley Drug and Alcohol Intake Unit. He was a member of the LEhigh Valley Care Association and served on the boards of DASPOP, the Allentown Task Force for Teenage Violence and the Mayor's Task Force on Drugs. Richard also provided counseling services through the Employee Assistance Program for the City of Allentown and Treatment Trends, Inc.

Richard was a true renaissance-inspired man whose teaching evinced a lifelong vocation to education. He exhibited characteristically high energy performances in the classroom due to his experience in theater, and his enthusiasm for studying and teaching. He was a seasoned raconteur. Spirituality was the milieu in which he lived and breathed.

A mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10AM, Friday, July 12, 2019 at Sacred Heart of Jesus Church, 336 N. 4th Street Allentown, PA 18102, where Richard was a member. His viewing will be held from 6-10PM on Thursday, July 11th, 2019 at Weber Funeral Home, 502 Ridge Avenue Allentown, PA 18102.

Online condolences may be made at

Published in Morning Call on July 10, 2019
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