Fr. Earl La Riviere Memorial Statue & Grotto


-- March 23, 2019 --

Relatives of Father Earl La Riviere flew in from Washington state to be present for the unveiling and dedication of the new bronze statue of Fr. Earl La Riviere, in its beautiful new meditation grotto .  Seen above, left to right: Ryan Faherty, great  nephew; Mark LaRiviere, nephew; Jim LaRiviere, nephew; Kathleen  Faherty, niece; Steve LaRiviere, brother; Susan LaRiviere, niece; Cammy  LaRiviere (Mark's wife). 

Through the La Riviere Society "Memorial Fund", Aquinas HS alumni (mostly from 1959-69) and friends of Fr. Earl sponsored the creation of his bronze statue, and the meditation grotto on the Aquinas HS campus.

The statue catches Fr. Earl in a moment, as he reaches out to the class during a poetry reading. His left arm reaches out to make a point, as he holds a book in his right hand.

Click here for the photo gallery of statue creation and the dedication, plus videos from the dedication!

If you were unable to travel to San Bernardino for the March 23 dedication, please return to this page from time to time. We'll post more photos and videos of the dedication. Initially, they'll be in an uncut format, to expedite access. Ultimately, the videos will be edited into a short documentary. So, please come back and check our progress.


Thanks to the generosity of many people, we raised $37,000 for the bronze statue and another $16,258 for the grotto.  For those of you who supported the Memorial Fund, thank you! Please scroll down to check out the donor acknowledgments.

The meditation grotto is a fitting home for Fr. Earl's statue. Its walls are covered by ceramic tiles, punctuated by a series of dedication and story plaques created in laser-etched black granite, polished to a mirror finish! We (meaning the devoted,hard working Mark Gardner - 1969) are fine tuning the grotto. It's an inviting, restful retreat, tucked away on the AHS campus - a place to reflect - a place to spend quality time. Any donations to the Memorial Fund from this point forward will provide for the grotto and statue's long-term maintenance.  

Alumnus Dick Saar (1969) donated all of the beautiful faux marble ceramic tiles for the grotto walls. Four teak wood benches are surrounded by beautiful potted flowering plants, making the grotto a place where anyone will enjoy sitting, meditating, maybe just sleeping! Perhaps someone will read one of the poems Fr. Earl loved so much, and taught so well. Special kudos again to Mark Gardner for designing, and doing most of the work to bring the grotto to life. Thanks also to Angelo Romeo and his crew for their excellent job on the tiles. Mark and Angelo have donated their time and hard work to an extent that is remarkable!

Please click here to add your tax-deductible support to maintenance of this lasting memorial to Fr. Earl - the statue and grotto - by your one-time or recurring monthly gift!

There are two ways to donate: (1) Use the Aquinas HS donation form to enter your credit card information , (2) Write a check, payable to "Aquinas High School", adding "LRS Memorial Fund" to the memo line; and mail it to

Aquinas High School

2772 Sterling Ave. 

San Bernardino, CA 92404.

(Gifts to date - see below)

Goal was met, funding the statue and grotto!