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The Saga of a "Dream Come True"

by Past State Deputies Frank R. Pulice and The Late Frederick H. Pelletier

Dating back to the late 1950's and into the middle 1960's, a number of resolutions were adopted by the California State Council advocating the need for a Knights of Columbus retirement home and requesting that the Supreme Council undertake such a project. Each year, due to legal ramifications, the Supreme Council rejected the proposals. Brother Edward Kennedy of Los Angeles Council No. 621, a former Master of the Fourth Degree in Southern California, had been an early champion of the retirement home dream.

In the late 1960's the Retirement Home Dream was revived by Brother James J. Moloney of San Mateo Council No. 1349. He and his supporters believed that the California Knights and their families could do nothing nobler than to care for their elderly brothers, their wives or widows. During the term of State Deputy Harold B. Joyce, 1971-1972, while Moloney served as State Secretary, a retirement home committee was formed to investigate the establishment of a California Knights retirement facility. A year long survey showed that the members were in favor of the idea, and, during Moloney's term as State Deputy, a request for donations was made through the medium of the Golden State Bulletin. The result was considered successful and during the next two years with successive donation drives we were able to accumulate a sum in excess of $10,000.

During the 1974-1975 term of State Deputy J. William Young of Marysville Council No. 1869 the state council passed a resolution to form Columbian Retirement Home, Inc. The original incorporators were State Deputy J. William Young, Past State Deputy James J. Moloney and Past State Deputy and Supreme Director Frederick Pelletier. Through the legal expertise of attorney Albert Ghirardelli of San Fernando Council No. 3016, Former State Advocate, Columbian Retirement Home, Inc. was formed as a 501 (C) (3) California non-profit corporation. Thus, to this day, donations made to the corporation are tax deductible.

Although donations did not produce sufficient capital for the corporation to take over a bankrupt hotel in San Diego area in the middle 70's, it was able to raise some $50,000 in repayable corporation loans; this gave the corporation it's first significant capital, and loans were subsequently repaid.