Monsignor William T. "Skids" McCrory, retired pastor of St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church in Havre de Grace, died Thursday of heart and respiratory arrest at a nursing home there.
Monsignor McCrory retired in 1991 after serving the Havre de Grace Church since 1968. He was pastor of St. Francis Church in Brunswick from 1959 to 1968.
"His advice to younger priests was that the most important thing for a parish priest was his relationship with the people," Monsignor W. Francis Malooly, chancellor of the archdiocese, said. "Skids always considered the people of Havre de Grace his people. He [also] was still fondly remembered by the people in Brunswick."
In 1990, he was named a Prelate of Honor to the Holy Father with the title of monsignor.
Born in Baltimore, he was a graduate of St. John's School in the old 10th Ward and of St. Charles College, St. Mary's Seminary on Paca Street and St. Mary's Seminary on Roland Avenue. He was ordained in 1941.
At St. Charles College, he got not only an education, but his nickname. An uncle who was rector of the college had become known as Skids after a fall while ice skating. Monsignor McCrory became Skids Jr., and the name stuck, in shortened form after thedeath of his uncle.
After his ordination, he served for two years at St. Francis Xavier Church in Washington, then part of the archdiocese, and then, until 1948, at St. Johns Church in Westminster.
From 1948 until 1959, he served at St. Peter the Apostle Church in Baltimore.
While in Havre de Grace, he also was chaplain of Post 1841 of the Catholic War Veterans in Aberdeen.
Archbishop William H. Keeler will celebrate a Mass of Christian burial at 10 a.m. today at the Havre de Grace Church.
Monsignor McCrory is survived by a brother, Donald McCrory of Baltimore; a sister, Margaret Hagan of Mesa, Ariz.; and several nieces and nephews.