Every San Franciscan — and every friend of freedom — should learn about Eugene Fahy, a native of Northern California who took a stand against tyrants and never backed down.
Born in San Mateo in 1911 and educated at Saint Ignatius and the University of San Francisco, Fahy was a brilliant man who left behind indisputable proof of his eloquence and courage. He could have been a prince of the city, one of San Francisco’s most prominent and prosperous men. Instead he took a vow of poverty and devoted his life to God.
He joined the Jesuits, went to China, was ordained a priest in Shanghai in 1945, and found himself in the district of Yangchow in 1949 — when the Communists arrived there.
Their first target: the Jesuit school.
“At first we were left pretty much alone while the Reds dug in,” Fahy wrote in a first-person account Life Magazine published in 1952 (and that is now available online).
“That summer, however, our school, the Aurora Preparatory, was taken by the Communists, both students and teachers being subject to an increasing barrage of dialectics,” he wrote.
They demanded “church reform.”