December 09, 2021

Passing of Brother Raphael Patton, FSC

The Alumni Office regrets to share that former faculty member Brother Raphael Patton, FSC, passed away on December 6, 2021. Brother Raphael worked at La Salle from 1963-1967 where he taught freshman religion, sophomore geometry and senior trigonometry as well as music appreciation and journalism. Brother Raphael also served as Freshman Class Moderator,
Yearbook Moderator, time keeper for Basketball under Duffy Lewis, helped coach long jump, high jump and pole vault, and helped produce Spring Showcase under Harold Frank. Brother Raphael attended numerous reunions at La Salle and could often be found at our Bay Area Alumni gatherings.

Services have been scheduled for Wednesday, December 15th.

8:45 AM - Viewing at Saint Mary’s College Chapel, Moraga
9:30 AM - Mass of Resurrection
12:00 PM - Burial at Mont La Salle, Napa
Luncheon at the Conference Center Dining Room to follow

Please read below for what was shared with the St. Mary's College Community.

Our prayers are requested for the peaceful repose of the soul of Brother L. Raphael Patton, FSC, a member of the Saint Mary’s College Bothers Community who died both unexpectedly and peacefully this morning at Mont La Salle in Napa, CA. In recent months, Brother Raphael had been experiencing some health complications that he and his health care team were addressing. Three weeks ago, he relocated to the Mont in Napa to receive the proper care and attention he deserved.

Born to James and Jane Patton in Concord, California, on January 14, 1942, Brother Raphael attended Mont La Salle Juniorate in Napa graduating in June 1958 and later received his religious habit at the beginning of his Novitiate in August of that year. His undergraduate work was at Saint Mary’s College of California earning a B.S. in 1963. He completed graduate studies at the University of Notre Dame, IN, obtaining a M.S. degree; a Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of Toronto, Canada; and an honorary Ed.D. from Saint Mary’s University in Winona, MN. During his two academic sabbaticals he did research at Yale University and Oxford University.

Brother Raphael began his teaching career in 1963 at La Salle High School, Pasadena where he was assigned for four terrific years. He was then transferred to Christian Brothers High School in Sacramento before arriving at Saint Mary’s College in Moraga in 1970. This began his almost forty years in Moraga of teaching, leading, and guiding his students and colleagues in mathematics. He was an active and vibrant tutor in the Integral Program along with Collegiate Seminar. In addition to his classroom and academic department work, Brother Raphael also lived in the student residence halls. Upon his retirement he was awarded emeritus status from the mathematics department. Away from the classroom he conducted wine tours in Northern California and traveled extensively in Europe.

While Moraga was “home” for him, he also chose to venture off to other Lasallian educational works around the world. He taught at Bethlehem University on the West Bank of Palestine; Tangaza College in Nairobi, Kenya; Christ the Teacher Center in Nairobi, Kenya, and Saint Mary’s University in Winona, MN.

As a Gael, Brother Raphael followed the teams of SMC as well as the Giants, A’s, professional golf, and the San Jose Sharks. His lifelong fascination with trains never left him! His frequent internet train trips were often spoken about at meals.

Brother Raphael is survived by his nephew Scott Edgar of San Ramon, a 1985 graduate of SMC.


La Salle College Preparatory was founded in 1956. Today, we are the only truly diverse and co-educational Catholic high school in Pasadena.