I have not written very much about Joan and her family history. I will, in this section, try to address most of the relevant material that she has accumulated over the years.
Joan was born at St. Ann's Clinic in Franklin, Louisiana, on April 16, 1953. Joan was the third born of five children, and the daughter of Olan Resweber and Grace Barras.Olan and Grace were natives of St. Martinville, Louisiana.
While growing up in Franklin, Geraldine or Gerry was my contemporary. We had mutual friends, and attended many parties at the residence of Pete and Lynn May. Gerry is Joan's oldest sister. She has one brother, Kirk, and one younger sister, Ann. It is ironic that I did not even know Joan until 1982. She had been hired as a Microbiologist at Franklin Foundation Hospital. It was during this period of time that both she and I were in the process of going though a divorce. Dr. Stirling and Carlos Snellgrove, a Physical Therapist at the hospital, were trying to set us up with a date. Joan beat them to the punch, however, when she came into my Pharmacy one Friday afternoon and stopped in to ask if I would cash a check for her. I looked at the name on the check and I remember saying, "I know when I have been had!" We went out the next night and have been together ever since. We proved to be a perfect match, and everything else just speaks for itself.
Joan's family history is quite interesting, because she is very likely to be a direct descendent of Jean Lafitte, the famous/infamous pirate. Joan's paternal Grandmother, or Olan's mother, was Henrietta Boutte. She is thought to be a descendent.
Joan now receives about $0.56 per year in oil revenues from District Judge Edward J. Stoulig's ruling in a Gretna, Louisiana, Court that named 1829 heirs to share in this distribution of monies by the descendents of Francois Zenon Boutte. Francois Zenon died without children and the royalties go to the descendents of his brothers and sisters. One of his sisters was Marie Celeste Boutte. Marie Celeste had a son, Louis Joseph Drauzin Judice. Louis Joseph had a son, Louis Gustave Judice. Louis Gustave had a daughter, Blanche Judice. Blanche had a daughter, Henrietta Boutte. Henrietta had a son, Olan Joseph Resweber. If Francois Zenon Boutte was indeed Jean Lafitte, it would make him Olan's great-great-great-great-great uncle by his grandmother's mother.
Olan also thought that there might have been a connection by his grandmother's father. Francois Cesar Boutte was born in 1780 and was a first cousin of Francois Zenon Boutte. He would have been Louis Boutte's, Olan's maternal grandfather's, great-great grandfather. Olan wrote August 10, 1984, "The information on the Boutte's (Lafitte's) were deduced from (1) the stories Mama told me of how her grandfather and his brothers and friends would sometimes disappear for periods of months or weeks and upon return always brought fabrics, trinkets, durable goods, and food staples which were not available locally, even during wars, famines and floods. (2) The plowing up of a cast iron pot full of gold coins by a Negro farm hand on Grandpa Boutte's farm. (3)The observation by me of odd shaped pieces of shiny black wood used in building a pump house for Grandpa's rice fields. They were probably remnants of the schooner "Black Maria.' The pump house was on the banks of Bayou Teche in Loreauville and (4) a rotting piece of black velvet with white skull and cross bones wrapped around the handle and broken blade stump (found) in an old hay loft. All above, along with (5) the undisputable fact that I still collect royalties from Lafitte and Bell Isle oil field as a Boutte and Gonsoulin heir." It seems as though the descendents of Francois Cesar Boutte carried on the Corsican tradition.
I am certainly no genealogy expert. For one thing I do not have the patience to make all of these connections, but Joan did spend a fair amount of time putting this part together. One of the interesting facts that came of her research in this area is that she found out that she is the 5th cousin to Robert Judice, SR., Charles Judice, and the late Dr. Donald J. Judice. She is 6th cousin to Robert (Bobby) Judice, Jr., and his wife Carolyn Viator Judice. Robert Judice, Sr. is married to Mattie Martin Judice, who is the daughter of the late Frank Martin, Sr. and the late Elda Martin. You might remember her as "Maw" in Reflections I; it is her wake that made for a night to be remembered by myself! Damn, how complicated can simplicity become! All I really intended to say is that I married Joan for her money!
Joan's family inheritance comes from the ownership of 253 acres of land on Barataria Island in Timbalier Bay. This land was owned originally by Zenon Boutte who died childless in about 1869. Claimants receive shares ranging from 0.0000011% to a maximum of 0.0416664%. Unfortunately, Joan is on the lower end of the scale, but I still love her for her money rather than her good looks or for her intelligence! Anyone who knows us can tell you this is a true statement!
In February of 1987 I was forced to undergo back surgery, and I was fortunate enough to have had a friend with whom I had attended Elementary School, Pre-Pharmacy, and Pharmacy School. Dr. Don Judice, M.D. had gotten bored with pharmacy shortly after he finished school, and frankly, he was far too smart to be stuck in pharmacy to begin with. So, "Donnie," as I affectionately knew him, went on to Medical School, and after graduating from LSU Medical School, he joined the Navy to do a residency in Neurosurgery.
Interestingly, his mother, Louise, was an LPN, and she took that opportunity to go to California, with "Donnie," to become a Registered Nurse. I knew that Dr. Judice had acquired his intelligence somewhere, and his mother...probably in her early sixties by then...showed everyone where that intelligence came from as she wisked her way through school, and easily attained her goal.
"Donnie" performed an L4 to S1 fusion on me at Terrebonne General Hospital in Houma, Louisiana, and I feel very fortunate to have been the subject of his expertise, because my back has done so well ever since, and I will be forever grateful to him.
It came as quite a shock to me when I heard that, my friend, Dr. Donald J. Judice had passed away quite suddenly while spending a short time at a hunting camp near Houma three or four years ago. Heart disease is prevalent in the Judice family, and even though I never heard what the cause of death may have been, I feel fairly certain that he probably suffered a massive myocardial infarction.
It is, indeed, very tragic when a man of this caliber is taken from us at such an early age, and so many people are then deprived of the knowledge and the services of one who was so gifted. I was quite saddened by the news, and I am sure that I was far from alone.
The Martins and the Judices live on "The Prairie Road". This is also home to Ronnie and Tana Thibodeaux and Patti and Cletus Boudreaux. Huey the "Bag Man" Boudreaux also lives on the "Prairie." As do some of the Lanclos families, Allen and Merlene Adams call "The Prairie" their home. There are families too numerous to recall, but "The Prairie" is an area that is located south and east of the "Twin Cities". The families who live there are nearly as close as the folks down "Bayou Sale", but the atmosphere is somewhat different.
Richoc is where my friends Donald and Shirley Landry live, and I received word recently that Donald still thinks highly of me and speaks surprisingly fondly of me as well! The Bucks also live in Ricohoc, as do Winnie and Jessie Verrette
The Calumet Cut or the Wax Lake Outlet is the dividing line for St. Mary Parish! This is where East and West clash! East of the Outlet is Patterson, Bayou Vista, Berwick, and Morgan City. Once you cross over that body of water, you have stepped into a different world! I think I mentioned somewhere that West St. Mary Parish is primarily based upon Sugar Cane Production, and East St. Mary is based primarily on oil and gas. The parish council holds its' meetings in the St. Mary Parish Courthouse in Franklin, and it is here that you can see and hear the differences no matter how subtle they might be! Many, many East -West battles have been fought in the trenches of the Courthouse! There have been many threats to splinter off into separate parishes, but as far as I know, that has not yet happened.
As like anything or anywhere, money is the force that either drives a wedge between the two groups of people, and it is also money that keeps them together; it certainly is not love for one another that keeps them together, nor is it hatred that drives them apart
Recently, Janet Trautman Hebert signed my Guestbook. This came as a pleasant surprise, Janet was one of the smartest people in my class in high school, and Jules was not one of the smartest boys in Hanson's graduating class, but he was smart enough to marry Janet, and, in my humble opinion, "Pretty Damned Smart." However, Janet is from an area of St. Mary Parish that I have not mentioned; she is from the Glencoe, Louisa, and Cypremort Point area. Jules Hebert, Janet's husband, is from the Charenton area, which I have already mentioned. Jules is the brother of Louis Hebert, who you might remember played with me as a teammate when we played for the Louisiana State Championship in Little League Baseball. The Glencoe area is home to the Rodriguez family and also home to Gail, Joey, and Theo Landry. Coral Miguez, Phillip Kern, and Jim Terry lived farther down toward Louisa and Cypremort point. I am sure there are many more people from that area that don't come to my mind at the moment, but it, somewhat like "Bayou Sale", is remote and close knit. I am not as familiar with that part of the parish, because I had few dealings with those people after my school years, unlike the "Bayou Sale" area with which I had many personal dealings.
Captain Thoville Smith and I met each other one evening as I was driving home to Franklin from my job in Bayou Vista. This was only about three months before I opened my Pharmacy in Centerville. I stopped in at the Rose Club for a beer, and Captain Smith was sitting at the bar drinking beer. Clyde Deslatte owned and operated the business at that time, and he introduced me to Captain Smith. The Captain was a straight shooter, and he quickly told me that he did not think I had picked a very good location for the Pharmacy. I realized that he and his wife would ultimately become my customers, so I certainly did not want to offend him, and I said maybe I should look around to see if I could find a more appropriate location. I did not especially care for the location myself, but this is the only place I could find where someone was willing to erect a building and lease it to me. Once he realized that I was sincere about not wanting to offend anyone, he very quickly said, "I was talking when I should have been listening." Wow, what a change of heart! He did not have a driver's license or a car, so about an hour later I was ready to leave, and he asked me to take him home. I eagerly led him to my Volkswagen, and he insisted that I go into the house to meet his wife, "Mama Jo." From that night on, we were the best of friends!
When I opened for business, he came over every afternoon to visit. He told sea stories over and over, and he seemed to not ever run out of tales to tell! It was not long before we were best of friends, and we began to fish together on weekends, and "Mama Jo" would cook the eggs taken from the fish, and her breakfasts made "Brennan's"in New Orleans pale by comparison.
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