Father Dowd Foundation
Des Lartigue
The Father Dowd Foundation mourns the death of our long-time board member Des Lartigue.
Des Lartigue was a vibrant and dedicated member of the Father Dowd Foundation Board. He was elected at a Board meeting December 17, 1985 the same time as colleague and friend Patrick Rourke.
Past presidents of the Catholic Foundations in Montreal remember Des as always forthright, helpful, very loyal and supportive. He had no hidden agenda and his only thought was how we could be helpful to others.
In the 70’s Catholic Community Services (CCS) in Montreal was about the only voice in the Community and had to speak out on occasion. The CCS Board felt, in fact, that it should make a "statement" to the Quebec Government regarding Bill 101 and Des was instrumental in putting the brief together, along with CCS president Andrew Fogarty.
Des was dedicated to helping seniors. He spearheaded numerous projects which helped senior centers in Montreal. One memorable one was his involvement, with fellow board member Murray Quinn, in the building of a patio for seniors at the Father Dowd Home made possible through a generous donation from the Cooper Estate. To this day the patio is most appreciated by the seniors who have an opportunity to spend time in a refreshing environment outdoors.
Another project Des spearheaded was the installation of “Snoezelen rooms” at the Father Dowd Home and Henri Bradet Center. The Snoezelen rooms were designed as a therapy for people suffering from dementia. The rooms use lighting effects, color, sounds, music, scents, to stimulate the senses. Staff members at the Centers give positive reports of the Snoezelen technology including improvement to seniors affective state, cognition, communication, and functional behavior. The seniors and their caregivers have experienced improved communication with each other. It is fitting that Des spent his final days in the compassionate care of the Henri Bradet Center which he supported for so many years. .
Des was adamant about setting up a continual council of past Directors so that knowledge and experience could be passed on to new board members. At board meetings he exhibited a great sense of humor, told wonderful stories, and was always willing to help in the initiatives for seniors. He was a man with a kind and generous heart