Deacon Martin Gerald Towey Ph.D.

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February 11, 1934 - April 5, 2021
Born in St. Louis, MO
Resided in St. Peters, MO

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Deacon Martin Gerald Towey Ph.D., of Saint Peters, MO, passed away Monday, April 5, 2021 at the age of 87. Beloved husband of Carole Ann Towey; cherished son of the late Martin A. and Mary C. Towey; devoted father of Anne M. Toenjes, Mark G. (Nancy) Towey, Thomas M. (Ann) Towey, Barbara Range and the late Mary C. Towey; loving grandfather of Matt Toenjes, Amy (Dave) Murray, Mike (Michelle) Towey, Patrick (Stefanie) Towey, Chris (Tara) Towey, Tom (Kathryn) Towey Jr., Kelsey Towey, James Range and Jonathon Range; treasured great-grandfather of Hailey, Samantha, MacKenzie, Kathryn, Benjamin, Margaret, Luke, Andrew and Colin; Martin was a dear uncle, cousin, friend, teacher and mentor to many.

Martin was a native St. Louisan, he attended St. Paul the Apostle School in Pine Lawn, St. Louis Prepatory Seminary and St. Louis University, where he earned his Masters degree and then his Ph.D. He started teaching at Riverview Gardens and then went to teach at UMSL and later to teach American History at SLU, where he became the History department chair.

Martin was ordained by Cardinal John J. Carberry in 1978, part of the second ordination class of permanent deacons in St. Louis. He worked as the Archivist for the archdiocese, while he was leading the Permanent Diaconate Office. As a deacon he served in Transfiguration in Florissant and his own parish of St. Matthias in Lemay beginning in 1983. After his retirement from SLU, he worked as the Arch Deacon until he moved to Lake of the Ozarks. He completed his deaconate career at St. Paul Catholic Church in St. Paul, MO.

Martin was very involved in Catholic Boy Scouting, first as Scoutmaster then advanced to District Commissioner. He also was a former chairperson of the Catholic Committee on Scouting. He also served on the archdiocesan Vocation Committee and committees for Synod 10.

Martin was dearly loved and will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Memorials may be made in Martin's name to Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital or St Paul Catholic School, St Paul, MO, 63366.

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic Baue Funeral Homes does require all family members and guests to wear a mask while visiting our facilities. Social distancing is required, and guests should stay at least 6 feet apart. Thank you for your understanding.

Guestbook Entries

  1. Lynn Brougham April 7, 2021 at 8:09 pm - Reply

    Mark, Nancy & family, You are in my thoughts and prayers.

    • Jane Iwasyszyn April 8, 2021 at 8:48 am - Reply

      candle 3My sympathies to the entire family. Dr. Towey was a brilliant man yet down-to-earth and approachable. A true role model. May his memory be a blessing.

  2. Tina Behlmann April 7, 2021 at 10:15 pm - Reply

    God bless! I really enjoyed talking with Martin! He was very fascinating! I especially enjoyed talking to him about a book he (mostly helped) write! He also autographed the book for me! I will charish the book and the memory! Thank you and God speed!!
    Tina Behlmann

  3. Dcn. Allen Boedeker April 8, 2021 at 5:32 am - Reply

    My heartfelt condolences to Carole and the whole family. Marty was a great teacher, minister, and mentor — a deacon’s deacon. May he rest in peace.

  4. Dennis Scally April 8, 2021 at 8:26 am - Reply

    I will always hold great memories of my Scoutmaster and the adventures he lead us on. Mr. Towey taught us many things not the least of which was how to be a leader. My god we had a lot of fun learning about growing up and responsibility under his leadership.
    I offer my deepest sympathy to all the family for this loss. At the same time can’t help but reflect on all the opportunities for learning he gave to you all. Compassion, friendship, the joy of living a good life and love for you all and those around you. Yes this is a time for sorrow but that sorrow lives in the shadow of the light he brought to all of us.
    I raise a cup to the great man, long may his memory live.

  5. Max Kaiser, Jr. April 8, 2021 at 8:42 am - Reply

    candle 5My sincere prayerful sympathies on the passing of Deacon Martin Towey. His wit, wisdom and caring personal style will be missed by many SLU alums, particularly those who enjoyed his history classes! May God Grant Him Eternal Rest, and all of his family consolation!
    Sincerely,
    Max Kaiser, Jr. KHS
    SLU A&S 1980
    Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society
    Ad Altare Dei Catholic Scouting Comm

  6. Mary Nice April 8, 2021 at 9:03 am - Reply

    Thinking of you

  7. Ray Purvis April 8, 2021 at 9:05 am - Reply

    Please know of prayers and sympathy coming from the Diaconate Community of the Diocese of Jefferson City. We remember him and Carole from your time in our Diocese. Carole and family, you remain in our prayers.
    Deacon Ray Purvis, Diaconate Office

  8. william f grosch April 8, 2021 at 9:06 am - Reply

    Dr T. and the whole Towey family have been such a blessing to my family over the years. He baptized both our kids and co-celebrated Bryan and Dianna’s wedding. He did a wonderful job because everyone turned out well. There was a lot of boat rides shared and swimming out in the lake and dinners that made this a special relationship. Dr T. was Transfiguration Parish and we were so proud of him when he became an initial Deacon in the diocese. We will never forget his big heart and big laughs and hugs. We will see you again Dr. T. take care in heaven and God Bless you.

  9. Ann S. Frey April 8, 2021 at 9:08 am - Reply

    The best History professor ever!
    Ann Schaab Frey

  10. Jade Burrell April 8, 2021 at 9:33 am - Reply

    candle 1Praying for the family you have my deepest condolences 💐

  11. Debbie Bonacquisti April 8, 2021 at 9:57 am - Reply

    I remember Dr. Towey from Transfiguration. I was in the same class as Tom. It was a great parish, made better by Dr. Towey. My deepest condolences to his family.

  12. Kevin & Julie Anstead April 8, 2021 at 10:33 am - Reply

    Our Sincere sympathies, much love and prayers go out to the entire Towey Family. Mr. Towey was a man of extraordinary FAITH and FAMILY.
    He will be greatly missed by many.

  13. Cathhy (Schmidt) Gebhardt April 8, 2021 at 10:36 am - Reply

    I was privileged to know Doctor Towey from Transfiguration and he drove carpool one day a week for IWA. He was always a silent listener and never chimed in on the “girls” conversation, (except for one time I remember!) He will be missed by all who knew him. He was a gentle soul. He and the Towey family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

  14. Robert Oker April 8, 2021 at 10:44 am - Reply

    He was a good man. I had the honor of working with him at Riverview.

  15. susan moore April 8, 2021 at 11:24 am - Reply

    God grant him eternal rest. i knew him through Transfiguration and my Dad (Permanant Deacon Norman Janson)….he baptized my older children and knew him also through his daughters at Incarnate Word. He was a very good man and i know you are blessed with wonderful memories. remember to hug those memories to you for comfort! God bless you!

  16. Tom and Priscilla Dealer April 8, 2021 at 2:46 pm - Reply

    TOM and I will be praying for Carol and the family.
    MARTY was a great friend and wonderful person. We will miss him.

  17. Anthony Vitale April 8, 2021 at 3:35 pm - Reply

    candle 8Dr. Towey was a wonderful professor and man. I owe him so much. I am sure he is in Heaven now.

  18. Betty Fau April 8, 2021 at 4:03 pm - Reply

    My most sincere condolences to Carole and family. Carole, may heart aches for you. I knew him as Deacon Jerry. He helped bring my husband Bob into the Church before Bob’s death and he married my husband Wayne and me at St. Anthony Parish, in Camdenton. Deacon Jerry was a great friend, a fun guy, fabulous sense of humor. Enjoyed being in his Bible study classes when we were in the Ozarks. What a pleasure to hear him tell a story or to tell of the history of the archdiocese, or the Church, or anywhere! I am greatly saddened by his passing. He’s no doubt being welcomed home by Fr. Jim, Wayne, and Bob, and all those family and friends who went before. May he rest in peace.

  19. Maureen Merkle April 8, 2021 at 4:51 pm - Reply

    I find it very hard to select the right words to describe what a wonderful person Jerry was. His heart always had room for others and his caring ways never wavered. He, you Carole, and Aunt Nan and Pop were the wonderful people who “adopted” my sister and me after our Dad’s death. Even though you had five wonderful children of your own, Jerry (and you) were there for us as our legal guardian and substitute Dad. Jerry’s impact on us as we grew from teens to adults helped form us into the people we are today. And the faith he helped us further develop has been the mainstay of my life.

    I am very saddened by his passing, even knowing he had a full life and wonderful family. He is with our Father in heaven and his faith has inspired us. Now he has the Joy he so strongly professed awaits all of us. With Love and prayers, Maureen

  20. George Merkle April 8, 2021 at 4:59 pm - Reply

    I still remember when Jerry said I should postpone our burning desire to marry until Maureen finished college. He didn’t absolutely say “no”, but laid a guilt trip on me that worked. As it turned out, after I received orders for Nam, she did quit in her last semester, but all’s well that ends well, and Jerry later gave me a recommendation that got me into UMSL at a critical time. Jerry had a great sense of humor, and I can always recall his sonorous booming laughter as he amused all with his stories. He must have done a great job baptizing our twins, they are both still practicing Catholics. Our prayers are with y’all as you go through this journey. I am sure Jerry is going to be helping us from his new domicile.
    George

  21. Dennis OFallon April 8, 2021 at 7:43 pm - Reply

    I had the privilege of being one of Dr. Towey’s students at Riverview Gardens High School in 1967. I remember him like it was yesterday. A first class gentleman, yet so cool! His father drove our school bus, he too was a really neat fellow.

  22. Mrs. Pat Weiss April 8, 2021 at 8:50 pm - Reply

    candle 8To the Towey Family,
    You are in our thoughts and in our hearts at this difficult time of losing Dad and Grandpa and Great-Grandpa.
    Our love and deepest sympathy goes out to you.
    Pat & Tony Weiss and Family

  23. John & Margie Platten April 8, 2021 at 9:13 pm - Reply

    Prayers to the entire Towey family.

  24. Bob and Pat Schwent April 8, 2021 at 10:20 pm - Reply

    Jerry – We are really going to miss you. God bless

  25. Peggy and Larry Blair April 9, 2021 at 8:00 am - Reply

    I will always be thankful for all Jerry did for Maureen and I after the death of our Dad when we were in our teens. As our legal guardian he saw us through our teens, keeping us in school and eventually gave each of us away when we married. That’s only part of all he did to guide us to successful and happy adult lives. Carole was there for us as well and between them both we managed to overcome our parents and our Aunt Mary deaths.

    May you all find peace knowing Jerry is with the Lord. You all have many special memories to keep him close and I hope these memories see you through this time of great loss. Eternal rest unto him Lord and prayers for all of you.

    Peggy and Larry Blair

  26. fred kues April 9, 2021 at 8:11 am - Reply

    To the Towey Family
    I have read the tributes about your dad. So many wonderful memories and a great guy.
    Cherish the memories– You were blessed to have a very good father. His positive impact on others will continue beyond the grave. What a testimony of a life well lived. May God comfort you a this special time.
    Please accept our deepest condolences.
    Fred and Shelley Kues

  27. Kathy Puhr April 9, 2021 at 8:28 am - Reply

    Dr. Towey was my professor when I was doing graduate work in American Studies at SLU. I saw him for the first time when he gave me Communion at noon Mass, and I was sitting in my 1 o’clock history class awaiting the arrival of the professor when he walked in, looked at me, and said, “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” His sense of humor, story-telling skill, knowledge of his subject, and deep faith were hallmarks of his character. We have lost a great man. Prayers for the family.

  28. Helen Etling April 9, 2021 at 8:56 am - Reply

    To Carole and family our deepest sympathy.

  29. Kevin Gallen April 9, 2021 at 10:33 am - Reply

    Deacon Towey was my favorite teacher and a great friend! He baptized my daughter and niece. Beyond history he also taught me how to be a good man. I will miss him.

  30. Joshua Mattingly April 9, 2021 at 2:17 pm - Reply

    candle 8My condolences to the Towey’s. Pat always spoke very highly of his grandfather.

    -Joshua Mattingly

  31. Elmer & Jo Ann Rudroff April 10, 2021 at 8:40 am - Reply

    The Rudroff’s history dates back from Transfiguration Parish thru when we lost touch for several years and once again met at the Lake Of The Ozarks many years laters. Knowing Marty, which is how we knew him during our Scouting years together and before he became a Deacon always greeted us with kind words and a big smile. God has taken a beautiful person into Heaven. We know Carole that your suffering from your loss and we’re so grateful that you and Marty had many years of a loving relationship. Love endures forever.

    Elmer and Jo Ann Rudroff

  32. Dorothy Mullen April 12, 2021 at 1:10 pm - Reply

    Oh, Deacon Marty we will miss you so very much. You helped Lee and myself obtain our annulments so we can get married in Church again. You were a ray of sunshine and hope for me when I approached you to begin my annulment process. You were truly Blessed by God. Your understanding and compassion were genuine. We thank God for the privilege of getting to know you. You certainly have served God’s people. We love you and will miss you. Rest in Our Loving God’s Arms.

  33. Katherine Henderson Simon April 14, 2021 at 9:29 am - Reply

    I was a student of Deacon Towey in 1960 when he was teaching Language in Riverview Gardens Jr. High. He was a wonderful teacher. He will be missed by all who knew him.

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