Samuel J. Reggie

CROWLEY – Services for Samuel Joseph Reggie, 87, Crowley native and prominent businessman, is set for Sunday, October 26, 2008 at 2 p.m. at St. Michael Catholic Church in Crowley with Msgr. Keith DeRouen and Rev. Archimandrite Herbert May, JCL celebrating. Geesey-Ferguson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Visitation may be observed from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. Sunday until service time. The rosary will be recited at 7 p.m. Saturday led by Sister Justine Baker and the Lay Carmelites. Entombment will follow the funeral services in the Woodlawn Mausoleum.

Mr. Reggie was born in Crowley on October 6, 1921 to Fred and Victoria Reggie. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Barbara Dumesnil Reggie, four daughters, Mary Elizabeth Istre and husband Dennis and Donna Marie Frugé and husband Michael, all of Crowley; Yvonne Marguerite Balentine and husband Garry of Baton Rouge; Barbara Anne Hornsby and husband Aaron of Crowley. He is also survived by three sons, Samuel J. Reggie, Jr. and wife Keral; John F. Reggie and wife Susan all of Crowley, Paul P. Reggie and wife Tina of Lake Charles, daughter-in-law Gwen Young and husband Gerald, brother Edmund M. Reggie and his wife, Doris, and brother-in-law Tom LaHood, thirty-seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his son, Lawrence “Larry” Reggie and siblings Emile Reggie and Yvonne LaHood.

He received his formal education at St. Michael High School, Southwestern Louisiana Institute (ULL), the U.S. Air Force Institute, U.S.A.A.C. School of Electronics, University of Southern Mississippi and Loyola University of New Orleans.

Mr. Reggie, a member of the Knights of Columbus since 1945, attained the Third and Fourth Degree level of that Order and served as Grand Knight, District Deputy and Membership Chairman of the Louisiana State Council.

Beginning in 1928, he served his church as an Altar Server, and since 1972 as Lector, Reader and Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion. He represented his Parish on the Diocesan Synod and served nine years as a member of the Diocesan Pastoral Council, serving several bishops. As a Master Catechist he taught religion classes at St. Michael Church to junior high students for 27 years.

He and his brother Edmund established the St. Vincent de Paul Society in 1952 which is today Crowley Christian Care. He and his brother Emile founded the Serra Club of Acadia Parish to encourage religious vocations. In 2000, he and his wife, Barbara, formed the community of Lay Carmelites of Our Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel.

In 1989 Pope John Paul II made him a Knight of the Holy Sepulchre and promoted him to Knight Commander with Star and Pilgrim Shell in 1999. He served as Spirituality Chairman for the Bishop Jude Speyrer Chapter of Pontifical Knights. He was Knight of Magistral Grace in the Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Rhodes and Malta since 1994 and made annual two-week pilgrimages to Lourdes, France to assist physically challenged pilgrims. Reggie was close to earning his Five-Thousand-Hour pin for volunteer service to the sick at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Hospital.

In 2005, he was selected as “The Humanitarian of the Year” in Acadia Parish.

He organized and was inaugural Chairman of the Board of the Monsignor A. O. Sigur Foundation. For many years he served noontime meals to the needy at the St. Joseph Diner and distributed clothing at the Monsignor Sigur Center in Lafayette.

Mr. Reggie served the National Catholic Community Foundation, was a Knight in the Order of St. Sherbel and member of the National Apostolate of Maronites of the Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon and Southern Area Chair of the Holy See’s Near East Welfare Association.

Reggie began Scouting in 1933 and served in various positions on the local, regional, national and international levels, ultimately obtaining the position of Life Member of the Board of the National Catholic Committee on Scouting.

He received the prestigious “St. Christopher Award”, International Awareness Medal and was selected to serve as a National Representative of the BSA. The Evangeline Council BSA honored him by naming the Eagle Scouts of that year the “Samuel Reggie Eagle Class of 2002.” For his many years of service he was honored with the Bronze Pelican Medal, the Bronze St. George Medal, the Silver St. George Medal, the Silver Beaver Award, the Grand Cross Service Award, the Order of the Bow, and the Blue Ribbon International Scouting Award. For extraordinary service to the Catholic Church, he was selected for the Golden Ad Altare Dei Medal.

As a successful businessman and member of the Crowley Chamber of Commerce, he served as Parade Marshal when John F. Kennedy was the honoree of the International Rice Festival. He was a member of the Crowley Rotary Club, a Charter Founder of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Foundation, a Life Member of the American Legion, the Disabled American Veterans and Alpha Phi Omega Fraternity. He was active in the annual “Christmas in April” rehabilitation project in Crowley and actively participating in Habitat for Humanity International.

Mr. Reggie gave years of attention to the needs of the Holy Family Hospital and Orphanage of Bethlehem and served on its Board. He assisted Ave Maria University of Florida, was an active member of the Franciscan Holy Land Foundation, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and the Bishop’s Services Appeal. Reggie also was a prayerful, financial and material supporter of the Carmelite Monastery, Bethany Home for Elderly and Infirm Sisters of the Most Holy Sacrament, Prompt Succor Nursing Home for Sisters of Marianites of Holy Cross and two Malta Houses for the sick and elderly in New Orleans.

He was a member and supporter of various arts and cultural associations.

He was a former member of the Tulane University Associates, President of the Tulane National Parents Council, and a presenter for the Business Forum of Tulane’s Freeman School of Business. He was Vice President for Governmental Affairs for Grantham University.

Mr. Reggie spent a lifetime devoted to his large and loving family while continually helping youth everywhere better understand character building while they learn to do their duty to God and to their Country. He worked to alleviate the suffering of the sick, the poor and the needy of all ages for as long as he was able – and did it all with a smile.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be sent to Carmelite Monastary, 1250 Carmel Drive, Lafayette, LA 70501, Notre Dame High School Library, or St. Michael Elementary School Library.

“My Baptism Promise was to build my faith through service to others. I tried to fill that Promise as best I could. From all who think I have said too little or too much, I beg pardon. And from those who think I did too much or not enough, I ask forgiveness. But those who think I have done just right, do not praise or thank me, but rather, join me in thanking God.” (St. Augustine).

Arrangements have been entrusted to Geesey-Ferguson Funeral Home of Crowley.

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