On Nov. 6, Jerry Joseph Boudreaux, 81, died, joining his wife of 58 years, Cherry Brady Boudreaux, 83, who died Oct. 16 as the result of a tragic accident.
Jerry and Cherry Boudreaux leave behind five children, Pookie (Boudreaux) and husband Bill Screws; Brent Boudreaux and wife Cheryl; Beetle (Boudreaux) and husband Vic Fisher; Robyn (Boudreaux) and husband David Amrhein; and Boosey Boudreaux and wife Kelly.
Boudreaux was well-loved and a highly respected member of the Zachary community. His generosity and positive spirit changed many lives, his family said.
A native of Grand Point, Jerry Boudreaux was born July 23, 1933. He graduated from Baker High School in 1952.
In 1956, Boudreaux graduated from Southwest Louisiana Institute, now University of Louisiana at Lafayette, earning a bachelor of science in education. Also graduating from SLI in 1956 was Cherry Brady, of West Monroe, whom Boudreaux married the same year.
Jerry attended LSU, obtaining his master’s in education in 1963 and Masters Plus 30 in 1967.
While at SLI, he lettered four years in football and served as president of the “S” club.
He was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force ROTC, joined the U.S. Air Force in 1957 and received an honorable discharge as a 1st Lieutenant in 1960.
Boudreaux worked as a teacher and coach at Leon Goudchaux High School in Reserve from 1960 to 1967.
He taught and coached at Baker High School from 1967-70, served as assistant principal at Baker Junior High and was principal at Zachary High School for 25 years, from 1970 until his retirement in 1995.
He was a charter member of the Baker Jaycees from 1960-66 and member of the Zachary Rotary club from 1975-2003. He was Rotary president, 1981-82.
In 1988, Boudreaux was named Zachary Citizen of the Year and named East Baton Rouge Parish’s High School Principal of the Year. He was a regional winner and state finalist as well.
In 1991, Boudreaux was inducted into the Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s Hall of Fame. He served on the LHSAA Executive Committee for 10 years and the LHSAA/Louisiana High School Coaches Association Hall of Fame Committee for 20 years. He was also inducted into the Baker High Hall of Fame.
Boudreaux served three terms as president of the Louisiana Association of Principals; president of the Louisiana Association of Educators, 1978-79; vice president of the Baton Rouge Area Retired Teachers Association from 2004-05 and president from 2006-08; president of the District IV LETA, 2010-12; and a member of the National Association of Secondary School Principals for 25 years.
He served as chairman for several committees and programs: the LHSAA School Visitation Program, 1995-2010; LHSAA/LHSCA Hall of Fame Basketball Classic for 26 years; and SACS Evaluation Committees for Louisiana Middle and High Schools, 1975-2010.
Boudreaux was a member of Lane Regional Medical Center’s Board of Commissioners, 1997-2007, where he also served as chairman for five years.
He was president of the St. John the Baptist Catholic Church Council from 1981-83 and 2000 until present, where he also served on the church’s finance committee. At the time of his death, Boudreaux was serving on the UL-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns Athletic Lettermen Club Board.
For two years, Boudreaux was co-chairman of the committee that formed the Zachary Community School District, and served six months as the superintendent of Zachary schools.
Boudreaux was also one of about 70 volunteers who worked to get the Zachary community school system off the ground. He served as consultant to several other school systems in Louisiana.
“When I met Jerry Boudreaux in the early ’80s, he was all about education. The thing that impressed me the most about him was his views on discipline and how he was with children in school,” said friend Frank Pelichet, of Zachary. “He wouldn’t let one kid prevent 25 others from getting an education.”
Pelichet, also one of the volunteers who helped launch the Zachary school system, said Boudreaux was strict but fair and “all about serving children and education.”
He leaves behind a legacy of love and friendships that he shared with people from all walks of life, his family said.
The Boudreauxs’ 10 grandchildren are Christy and husband, Ron Anderson; Brad Hawkins; Jessica Boudreaux; Brian Wiggins and wife, Julie; Jeannie and husband, Mark Wilson; Dustin and wife, Laura Kate Amrhein; Blake Amrhein; and Zachary, Alex and Emily Boudreaux.
Their 12 great-grandchildren are Anna Kate, Allie Grace, Andie Lynne, Taylor, Brooke, Collin, Madlyn, Dylan, Caden, Lalia, Chase and Jackson.
Boudreaux also leaves behind a brother, Calvin Boudreaux, and his wife, Ann; a sister, Clara Mae Daigle; and sister-in-law, Ruth Boudreaux.
Visitation for Boudreaux was Nov. 9 in the Zachary High School gym.
“Mr. Boudreaux was a wonderful man who dedicated his life to ZHS and the children of Zachary. His visitation in the gym was most fitting and being escorted by the horse with the Zachary flag was touching,” said Zachary superintendent Scott Devillier. “We will miss him.”
Pallbearers at Boudreaux’s funeral were Terry Coates, Brent Fuselier, Doug Hall, Tom Henry, Howard Martin Jr., John Miller, Charles Monteilh and John Phares.
Honorary pallbearers were all retired principals and teachers, as well as R.E. Amrhein, Joe Calloway, Jerry Epperson, Billy Honeycutt, Coach Gay Keller, Dr. Howard Martin, Buddy Mouton, Jerry Owens, Louis Roth, Jesse Spears, Steve Stephens and the late Bob Odom.
Boudreaux was buried Nov. 10 at Azalea Rest Cemetery following a funeral mass at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, which was conducted by the Rev. Jeff Bayhi.
Boudreaux was preceded in death by his parents, Alex and Iola Boudreaux; his brother-in-law, Manuel Daigle; and in-laws, Marie and Elra Brady.
Zachary High football players will wear the initials “J.B.” on their helmets during Friday’s game.
“Although I did not know Mr. Boudreaux personally, it is quite obvious to me what kind of major impact he had on the Zachary school system and community as a whole. Our program is honored to wear his initials on the back of our football helmets to honor his outstanding accomplishments and legacy,” Bronco head coach David Brewerton said. “His vision continues to flourish and remains evident daily on our campuses and throughout the community.”
To honor Boudreaux, donations may be made to the Jerry Boudreaux Memorial Scholarship Fund at the Bank of Zachary.