Jesuit Father Ramon A. Salomone died on Aug. 25, 2018 at Montefiore Hospital, Bronx, New York.
He was born on Nov. 25, 1933, in Brooklyn, New York. Fr. Salomone joined the Jesuits at St. Andrew on Hudson in Poughkeepsie, New York, on Aug. 14, 1951. He studied philosophy at Spring Hill College, taught chemistry and mathematics at Fordham Prep, earned his Ph.D. at Fordham in organic chemistry followed by special studies in organic chemistry in 1963, and was ordained on June 10, 1965, at Fordham University, Bronx, New York.
As a National Institute of Health post-doctoral fellow he polished his chemical wisdom at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts (1967 to 1969).
The next big step took him to Canisius College in Buffalo for eight years (1969-1977). There he taught chemistry, then took over the leadership of the department. Having done well at Canisius, he was sent to Le Moyne College in Syracuse (1977-1982) to keep on teaching chemistry, but this time also serve as rector of the college community. He pronounced his final vows on Dec. 8, 1979, at Le Moyne.
The next step became a radical challenge to those administrative talents which Canisius and Le Moyne, plus- six years as vice-provincial for formation for the New York province (1982-1988), had prepared him for—Africa (1989-2004).
The Jesuit apostolate to Nigeria-Ghana, for example, in 1998, was a complex and demanding operation—a novitiate in Benin City, a school in Abuja, a Centre and a parish in Benin City and a parish in Lagos, all operated by approximately 40 Jesuits, most of whom were Americans. The major challenge came from the culture—political and business corruption, terrorism, poverty, weak infrastructure and primitive religious concepts which would make it difficult to absorb standard theological training. Fr. Salomone came as novice director and gradually moved up to regional superior.
In 2004, he returned to New York to serve as the provincial assistant for international apostolates. In previous years he had regularly led retreats and served as a hospital chaplain, so now, living at Murray-Weigel Hall, he was as active as possible. He kept singing in the house choir and sang the Responsorial Psalms at community Mass.