NEW DELHI, (C.M. Paul) – One of the few remaining Italian Salesian missionaries in India, Fr Dino Colussi died, 5.30 pm Monday 27 August at Holy Family Hospital Okhla, New Delhi. He was 83 years old.
A member of the New Delhi provincial house, “Fr Dino has been ailing for about a month and was in and out of hospital for treatment when he suffered a fatal heart attack today and died,” said Rector of the Provincial House Fr Paul Padamattumel.
Among the several VIP visitors who turned up to pray for the deceased today (27 August) was the Apostolic Nuncio.
After a solemn requiem Mass by the Salesian Family members on 28th August, the body will be flown by Air India on 29th August noon to Ranchi where Fr Dino wished to be buried near his older brother Fr Guido at Don Bosco Kokkar, Ranchi.
The funeral at Ranchi will take place on 30th August presided over by Cardinal Telesphore Toppo of Ranchi.
Fr Dino was the youngest of five brothers, all Salesian priests, who went to the missions in their late teens. Four of the brothers came to India (Guido, Ferruccio, Luciano and Dino) and Giuseppe went to South America.
Their only sister, Rina joined the brothers to go to the missions and was a pioneer missionary among the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians (Salesian Sisters) in India and is buried in Shillong.
In 2010, one of his brothers, Fr Luciano Colussi, former Vicar General of Krishnagar diocese, Kolkata and is buried at the historical Marian Shrine at Bandel.
Arriving in India in 1951, Fr Dino pioneered several employment projects at Don Bosco Youth Centre Krishnagar in Nadia district. Some of the employment generating projects included poultry farming, piggery, saw mill, as well as food canning factory which employed scores of local youth.