EUNICE~ It is with heavy hearts and great sadness that the family of Gary “Goose” Fontenot, former Eunice Police Chief, passed away on Friday, December 17, 2021, in the comfort of his home with his loving family by his side. He was 69. A Funeral Service will be held at 1:00pm on Wednesday, December 22, 2021, at Ardoin’s Funeral Home Chapel in Eunice. Burial will follow in the Attales Cemetery with Father Hampton Davis, officiating.
Gary was born in Eunice on November 05, 1952. He attended Eunice area schools until joining the United States Army at 17 years of age where he defended his country as a Vietnam combat veteran and was a chosen member of task force Gimlet (the last troops in Vietnam). He retired after 21 years as a full-time fireman and volunteer member with the Eunice Fireman’s Association of which he was a board member, training officer and past vice president. He also attended LSU-Baton Rouge and earned over 70 hours of training ranging from race relations to arson investigation. He served two terms for the City of Eunice Fire and Police Civil Service Board of which he was vice chairman. Gary retired as Chief of Police for the City of Eunice after being elected to serve three terms from 1999-2010, a feat no other chief achieved in over fifty years. He graduated from the police academy with over 200 hours of continuing education in personnel management, domestic violence, diversity, budgets, disaster preparation, civil service laws and criminal law. While chief of police, he served as a board member of the ALETA Police Academy, member of the LA Chief of Police Association, the District Attorney Major Crime Task Force, and a member of the Evangeline Law Enforcement Council. He was a life-long member of the VFW Post 8971 in Eunice where he served as senior vice commander and post commander. He was instrumental in getting the military tank donated to the post from the United States Government. Gary was also the owner and operator of Gary’s Safety Inspection in Eunice for over 33 years and Gray Goose Security. He also worked over ten years with cable TV in Eunice and surrounding areas. He was a 3rd degree Knights of Columbus, member of the American Legion, Disabled American Veterans (DAV), and a sponsor and member for the Boy Scouts of America, Pack 409. He also volunteered his time coaching youth sports.
Gary was known for his great craftmanship and unique engineering skills. He could play the guitar and sing, he enjoyed fishing, was a big football fan, a great storyteller and spoke Cajun French fluently. He enjoyed playing Santa Clause for family and friends but mostly, Gary loved his family deeply and loved being around them.
He leaves loving memories to be cherish by his loving wife, Debbie Fontenot of Eunice; his five children, Melissa Fontenot of Lafayette, Mayor Scott A. Fontenot and wife, Katie, Donald “Donnie” Richard and wife, Michele, and Daniel “Danny” Richard and companion, Nichole, all of Eunice, Dawn Ancelet and husband, Erick of Crowley; his grandchildren, the joys of his life, Anzley and Wesley Fontenot, Christian, Maggie, Murphy, Isaac, Leo, Simon, Miles, Elizabeth, Frankie and Foster Richard; Caleb (Lacey) Andrus, Lindsay (Tanzy Deshotel) Richard, Cade (Sydnie Dupre) Richard, Ashlyn Richard; John Heath (Candace) Granger, Maegan (Khalil Harrison) Granger and Wyatt Ancelet; and ten great grandchildren, Jobe, Cove, Zayden, Aleigha, Noelle, Nolan, Maddox, Khalani, Zane and Noelle; as well as extended family, including Kenneth Sylvester, Robert and Kathy Sylvester, Sandra Doga, Bruce Anderson, Gwen Johnson, Mary Ann Fontenot, and many dear friends.
He is preceded in death by his father, John R. Fontenot, mother, Inez F. Credeur and stepfather, Eugene Credeur.
At the request of the family, visitation will be held at Ardoin’s Funeral Home in Eunice on Tuesday, December 21st from 2:00 pm until 10:00 pm and again on Wednesday, December 22nd from 8:00 am until time of services. A Rosary will be prayed at 6:00 pm on Tuesday.
Family and friends may view this obituary and sign the guestbook at www.ardoinfuneralhomes.com
Ardoin’s Funeral Home of Eunice, 1301 West Laurel Ave, (337)457.3371 is in charge of arrangements.