John Patrick Cody

Born 1908 - Died April 25, 1982

The son of an Irish immigrant, John Patrick Cody was a priest for 50 years. In that capacity he fought for racial integration in New Orleans, before being assigned to Chicago in 1965. Among the incidents that got him notice in Chicago was his closing of black inner-city parochial schools - not out of racism, but because he felt they had too many non-Catholic pupils.1

Cody was later the target of a grand jury investigation under U.S. Attorney Thomas P. Sullivan. In January of 1981, they dug through church and bank records to see if there was any evidence that Cody had diverted up to $1 million dollars in church funds to his childhood friend, Helen Dolan Wilson. Cody and Wilson both denied all of the allegations. Meanwhile, the Vatican itself had been investigating Cody since the 1970s.

In ill health, Cody died on April 25, 1982.2

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