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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

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Local pharmacist Gerald Callais passes away after long illness

Local pharmacist Gerald Callais passes away after long illness

During the early hours of Saturday morning August 18th, as the thunder roared and lightening flashed from a local thunderstorm, a small group of family and friends said goodbye to their father, grandfather, and friend as Gerald Callais peacefully passed away. But not without a fight! For the past week or two, hospice personnel said Gerald was near death but he continued to beat the odds.

And those who knew and loved Gerald knew he would not give up without a struggle. For the past thirteen years, Gerald fought the onset of Alzheimer's disease.

Gerald was the youngest and smallest member of the class of '59. He was selected as one of the favorites in our class on the basis of ability, scholarship, and personality.

After graduation from LCO High School, Gerald enrolled in Northeastern State College majoring in the field of pharmacy. Gerald graduated with honors and awards from the Northeastern University School of Pharmacy on May 19, 1965.

Gerald returned home to begin his chosen profession. He married his high school sweetheart, Sue Trosclair, and together they had three children, Kelly, Lynn, and Timmy. He also had six grandchildren that he was very proud of. Gerald and Sue were married for forty-nine years before her untimely death in 2012.

During the course of Gerald's career he once owned three drug stores, one in Raceland, one in Golden Meadow, and one in Grand Isle.

As a pharmacist and businessman, Gerald was a fierce competitor. When the major chain stores moved into our community, Gerald held his own, built a new store in Golden Meadow, and remained successful throughout his fifty years as a local pharmacist. His one goal was to make south Lafourche a healthier place to live. He stressed professional, courteous, and personal service for his customers and worked six days a week to serve them. His slogan was “People Caring about People.” One of his prized possessions was the certificate he received from the Louisiana Board of Pharmacy in recognition of his 50 years of service.

During the years he worked in the local medical field, Gerald always cared for and appreciated his loyal customers that he called his friends. Over the years, Gerald provided medical advice and prepared prescriptions for two and three generations of local residents that totaled in the tens of thousands of “friends”.

Although very busy in his pharmacy and drug store, Gerald took the time to participate in civic activities that were important to the south Lafourche community. He was an active member of the Chamber of Commerce, a parishioner of St. Joseph Catholic Church and volunteer for the Cajun Festival, and board member of the Lady of the Sea Hospital. Gerald was Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Lady of the Sea Hospital during the construction of that facility. He took pride in being a driving force in the development of the Dialysis Center on the hospital grounds.

To his family and friends, Gerald Callais' life was an beacon of dedication, perseverance, generosity, and success. He will be greatly missed by all of us who knew and loved him.

A visitation will be held in his honor from 10 a.m. until funeral time at noon on Friday, August 24th at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Cut Off, La.