DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Steve Landregan, who worked and witnessed history at Parkland Hospital on Nov. 22, 1963, and who served the Diocese of Dallas for more than 50 years, passed away in the early morning hours on Sunday, November 25. Landregan died of respiratory failure in Phoenix, AZ while visiting family, the Dallas Diocese said in a news release Monday.

Landregan was 90.

aland1 Thrust Into Spotlight When JFK Assassinated, Longtime Catholic Church Leader Passes Away At 90

Steve Landregan (photos: Dallas Times Herald and Diocese of Dallas)

Born in 1928 in Evansville, Indiana, Landregan served in World War II and Korea writing for Stars and Stripes, the U.S. military newspaper.

He and his young family moved to Dallas where he graduated from Southern Methodist University in 1954. Shortly after, he went to work for local media outlets such as WFAA radio. He later was employed at Parkland Hospital in Dallas where he was thrust into the national spotlight when he served as the on-duty administrator the day that President John F. Kennedy was rushed to the hospital after being mortally wounded during a motorcade through downtown Dallas. Among other duties that fateful day, Landregan kept the media apprised of President Kennedy’s grave condition and eventual death.

A few years later, on March 1, 1966, Steve Landregan came to the Diocese of Dallas as the editor of The Texas Catholic. He worked as the editor for a dozen years, guiding coverage of the local church through the tenures of Bishop Thomas Gorman and Bishop Thomas Tschoepe. He eventually served four bishops throughout his 50 years of service to the diocese including Bishop Charles Grahmann and now Cardinal Kevin Farrell.

He left The Texas Catholic in 1978, and over the years worked in various departments and capacities, including as the director of pastoral planning and as an archivist and diocesan historian.

In 1970, Landregan served on a committee studying the concept of reviving the permanent diaconate in the Catholic Church in Texas and three years later became one of the first two permanent deacons ordained for the Diocese of Dallas. He left the diaconate in 1991 when he married his wife Barbara, after his first wife, Virginia, passed away in 1989 following a lengthy battle with cancer.

Landregan taught writing and other courses including world religions at area colleges. His faculty appointments include serving as an adjunct professor at Southern Methodist University, University of Dallas and Brookhaven College in Dallas and Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio.

His numerous columns, scholarly work for periodicals and books and e-books on the history and the people of the Texas Catholic Church has gained him praise among bishops and historians across the country. The University of Dallas hosts an annual Steve Landregan Lecture Series that brings in experts to discuss topics important to the Catholic Church.

Funeral services for Steve Landregan will be held at the Church of the Incarnation, located at 1845 E. Northgate Drive in Irving with Rosary and visitation on Thursday, November 29 at 7:00 p.m.

A Funeral Mass will be held on Friday, November 30 at 10:00 a.m.