Memorial of COVID victims from Avoyelles

Names sought for Memorial page

As the world, this nation, Louisiana and Avoyelles Parish endure the onset of a new wave of coronavirus infections and deaths, this newspaper has begun working on a project to remember those who have died in this world-changing pandemic.

This parish as a whole has endured the loss of over 100 friends, family members and neighbors over the past 10 months. Each individual who died is missed by many families in a much deeper, personal way.

The English poet John Donne once wrote that every death diminishes us all, just as a huge continent is reduced ever so slightly whenever a wave washes away a small clod of dirt.

There is a tradition in some coastal communities who suffer a ship lost at sea. The town's bell will ring for each crew member lost. It is a somber way for an entire community to share its grief with those who lost loved ones to that tragedy.

This newspaper is asking those who have lost someone to COVID to share a name, hometown and photo of that person. Our hope is to create a memorial page to commemorate those who died.
If you lost a loved one to COVID and would like to have their name included on the honor list, please let us know. You can text 318-346-7251 or email us at

We don't have a large bell to ring to mark the passing of each victim, but this will be our "bell."

And, as the poet Donne noted almost 400 years ago when he was recovering from a serious illness, no one in this parish will be able to say the bell is ringing for the family of someone else. This bell will be ringing for all of us.

Thank you.
-Raymond L. Daye, Editor
Avoyelles Publishing

AvoyellesToday will be publishing individual biographies of Avoyelles area residents, natives or former residents who have been lost to COVID.

So far the parish has lost over 100 residents during the pandemic.

If you lost a loved one to COVID and would like to have their name included on the honor list, please let us know. You can text 318-346-7251 or email us at

Some of the names which have been submitted so far are:

*BORDELON, Audrey Lachney, 90, Marksville
Died Dec. 5, 2020
St. Joseph Catholic Church member, long time bookkeeper at Scallan Grocery, seamstress; telephone operator

*BOTT, Robert, Jr., 77, Fifth Ward
Died Sept. 23, 2020
Father, brother, grandfather and National Guard veteran

*BROCHARD, Natalie, 92, Cottonport
Died Jan. 20, 2021
mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, long St. Mary's Assumption Church member, remembered for smile and kind ways

*CALLIHAN, Sylvester "Sonny", 79, Simmesport
Died Aug. 30, 2020
Former Simmesport Police Chief, Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church Deacon Chairman, Ward 7 Constable

* COUVILLION, Marsden, 89, Marksville
Marksville Businessman, owner of M. A. Couvillon AC and Heathing
Korean War Veteran

* EDDY, Shelver W., 81, Marksville
Moved to Marksville with her husband Robert who helped establish Gulfco Finance and Insurance Company in the 1960s.

* DEARK, Larry, 63, Marksville
Farmer and cattleman,
Died Jan. 20, 2021

*GASPARD, Paul, 73, Marksville native
ownernPaul Gaspard Seafood in Crowley and Belle River

* GUILLORY, Dr. Jim, Former resident of Plaucheville
Former Avoyelles Parish Police Juror, School Board member

*GUILLOT, Geraldine, 80, Fifth Ward
died July 25, 2020

*GUILLOT, Antoinette, 85, Fifth Ward
Died Dec. 10, 2020
Grandmother of 17

*JONES, Van Keith, Jr. Hickory Hill
died in June 15, 2020

*Lartigue, Aaron, Jr., Jacoby, Lettsworth
Died Aug. 13, 2020

* LEMOINE, David, 69, Cottonport native
Long time service with U. S. State Department

* LUEALLEN, Jimmy Doyle, 79, Bordelonville
Member of Bayou des Glaises Baptist Church
Father, Grandfather, Great-Grandfather, Great-Great Grandfather
At age 79, he was still driving an 18 wheeler hauling grain for area farmers
Died Sept. 25, 2020

• McCAIN, Sandy
Warden of the Raymond Laborde Correctional Center, Cottonport

*McNeil, Mary Evelyn, 95
Goudeau native living in Houston, TX; died Jan. 18

* McVEA, Dr. Casey
Medical director at Raymond Laborde Correctional Center, Cottonport

* MOREAU, Lisa, 53, Simmesport
Cashier at Cottonport Bank
Died July 27, 2020

*ROSS, Ronnell, 58, Simmesport
Died July 5, 2020
Husband, father, grandfather, brother

* SOILEAU, Byron David, 42
Marksville, left behind a wife and three sons in Marksville

* TASSIN, Dr. John Adam, 76
Native of Bordelonville,
Former state senator, physician

* WATTS, Pamela, 60
Resident of Effie
Accountant, wife, mother, grandmother. Died January 8, 2021

*WILKES, Kenneth, 68, Marksville
Died Jan. 16, 2021


105 N Main St
Marksville, LA 71351
(318) 253-9247