Church sex abuse victim takes his own life
We Are Central PA
July 04, 2016
An altar boy who was among the victims of child sex abuse in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese took his own life on Saturday.
Brian Gergely served under Monsignor Francis McCaa at Holy Name Parish in Ebensburg.
In 2003, Gergely filed a civil lawsuit with the diocese, but his friends say his life was forever changed by the abuse.
Included in that suit was, Kevin Hoover, who WTAJ News spoke to after the grand jury report was released earlier this year.
Hoover was also abused by McCaa. He pointed to the timing of his friend's death, which came just days after the state Senate voted 49-0 that part of the statute of limitations bill was unconstitutional.
Pennsylvania Catholic Conference spokesperson released this statement:
"Words cannot express the sorrow that comes with the tragic loss of Brian Gergely. Brian and his family are in our prayers. We stress that help is available to all survivors of childhood sexual abuse. All 10 Pennsylvania dioceses financially cover the expenses of counseling or treatment services offered through local resources not affiliated with the Church. Anyone who is abused should immediately contact law enforcement and anyone who is struggling should contact their county’s crime victim support services office, or a group like www.MaleSurvivor.org, http://www.1in6.org, http://www.rainn.org, and others.”
Since the grand jury report the Catholic Church has reached out to survivors, offering opportunities to meet with counselors and professionals independent of the Church.
The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference says it will pay for these services no matter how long ago the crime was committed and for as long as necessary.
Brian Gergely was 46 years old.
Friends received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at Matevish and Matevish Funeral Home, 307 N. Center St., Ebensburg.
Funeral Mass at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Holy Name Catholic Church.
Committal, Holy Name Cemetery, Ebensburg.