Ourso Funeral Home


Gerald Joseph LaChute

November 29, 1947February 16, 2021
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Gerald Joseph LaChute, age 73, passed away on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at his home in Gonzales, LA with his loving wife, Cindy, by his side, after a long and courageous fight battling cirrhosis of the liver from exposure to the chemical agent orange during the time he served his country in Vietnam.

Gerald was born on November 29, 1947 in New Orleans, LA to Joseph and Nola (Ansardi) LaChute of New Orleans. Gerald graduated from Behrman High School in 1967. He was then inducted into the United States Army in July of 1968. He fiercely fought for his country as a Staff Sargent in the Vietnam War until 1970, when he was honorably discharged. During his time of service, he was decorated with the Bronze Star Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Air Medal, Parachute Badge, the Combat Infantryman S Badge, as well as the Vietnam Campaign Medal.

After his return from serving his country, he married Cynthia Seaman LaChute on October 21, 1972 and together they had four children. Gerald became employed at Avondale Shipyards and then Crescent Towing, where he earned his Captain's License and continued working until he acquired his Pilot's License. Gerald was elected into The New Orleans Baton Rouge Steamship Pilots Association in 1976. He took much pride in and cherished the 42 years he spent piloting the Mississippi River.

Gerald's special interests and hobbies included hunting and fishing, raising Thoroughbreds and Quarterhorses, as well as cattle. He had a green thumb and was passionate about farming and cultivating agriculture. Among other things, he loved photography, collecting, antiquing, cooking and enjoyed casinos, movies and traveling. Most of all, Gerald loved spending quality time with his family.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 40 years, Cynthia; sons, Patrick and Ross, daughters Allison Smith (Jeremy), Ashley Wiggins (Beau), 4 grandchildren, Haven Simoneaux, Bella Wiggins, Christian and Eliana Smith; sisters Doris LaChute McAbee and JoAnn LaChute Yancey. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, February 24, 2021 at Ourso Funeral Home, 13533 Airline Hwy. Gonzales, LA 70737. Open visitation will be held from 10-12:00 p.m. Pastor Duke Chance of New Life Ministries will be presiding over the service at 11 a.m. Graveside military service and burial will follow at Louisiana National Cemetery, 303. W. Mount Pleasant Road, Zachary, LA 70791, at 1 p.m. To view and sign the guestbook, please visit


  • Visitation

    Wednesday, February 24, 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Wednesday, February 24, 2021


Gerald Joseph LaChute

have a memory or condolence to add?

Dana Richier

February 27, 2021

Gerald and I shared many escapades from my neighborhood in River Park our Senior year. We rode around on his Honda 90 motorcycle before scooting about in his SS396. We double dated many times to dances and I was always appreciative because I didn't have a license and he never complained about being the "somewhat Designated driver"!?1?! I always felt special in Gerald's company and remembered his job at the McDonald's on General Meyer Ave. He was level headed and down to earth and had no regards for presumptions about others. A guy named Michael Buckley from Algiers, who got drafted with me and went to the 1st Cavalry Division like I did in Vietnam in 1970, told me about the his first day in the bush when he replaced a guy who was going home from the jungle at the end of his tour. They asked my buddy where he was from and he said New Orleans . They told him the guy he was replacing was from New Orleans , too. It was Gerald. God Bless him for his service to his country. I will always consider Gerald as a person who Valued and enjoyed life. God bless his family.

Cheryl Brink-Gennusa

February 27, 2021

I just viewed the beautiful video tribute and see that it was prepared with much love and devotion by Gerald’s wife and children. I send my heartfelt condolences to Cynthia and her family.


February 24, 2021


I am so sorry for your loss. Capt. Gerald was always such a kind person to the staff in the office. He was charming and funny and always so respectful of the employees. He was a joy to be around. I am keeping you and your children and grandchildren in prayer, Cindy / NOBRA

Gary Hill

February 23, 2021

Always enjoyed riding ships with Capt. Gerald both before & during my apprenticeship. I appreciated his easy going approach to piloting & enjoyed many of his stories he told of his experiences while serving in Vietnam.

Fair winds & following seas Capt. Gerald.

Gary Hill

William Di Giovanni

February 23, 2021

We were saddened to hear about Gerald's passing. Cynthia, our prayers are with you and your family. I have known Gerald for almost 60 years. We have spent time together at different times in our lives. One of those times was in our senior year of high school. Gerald and I almost did not graduate that year because we spent so much time duck hunting and I would not trade that for anything in the world. Gerald was a great friend. Here is a picture of our July 4 picnic 20 years ago, when we still had color in our hair.

Allison Smith

February 22, 2021

I have never witnessed a more beautiful moment, aside from the birth of my children, than the instant my dad surrendered his life to Jesus. A moment I had prayed for for over 10 years. Mother’s Day 2008. It was an undeniable, radical moment that changed his life, and eternity, forever. Anyone who was there that day, or any day he was in the Lord’s presence, was blessed to witness a truly genuine and unequivocal time in the presence of a mighty God, unimaginable sense of peace, and overwhelming sense of joy that came over him. So much so that it moved others to be transformed. I had NEVER seen my dad such at peace throughout his entire life as when he was in the presence of his Lord, and knowing that he is there now and forever, gives my soul such comfort and rest. 2.5 years ago when he was first admitted to the hospital, they told us he he wouldn’t make it out. And we were told that repeatedly over the years. He was a fighter. His whole life. Definitely stubborn at times and not the easiest patient by far, but I believe those are the qualities that helped him fight and hold on for this long. 2.5 more years of laughter, travels, lunch dates, hugs, and memories.

As Eliana said, “Cappy will have a new body in Heaven. He won’t be stuck in bed and can go play. His tummy won’t hurt anymore.” And as Christian said, “he will finally get to touch a street made of gold.”

Please pray for my family during this season. That my mom and siblings will be comforted and held in the hands of Jesus as we all grieve this loss. And ultimately I pray that the miracles preformed in his life will be a testament to how great our God is!

Allison Smith

February 22, 2021

There are so many things I will miss about my dad. I will miss his spur of the moment phone calls inviting me to lunch almost every day of the week. Hearing him tell stories about his life growing up, Vietnam war stories and Never ending River talk. I’ll totally miss his amazing blackberry dumplings and one of a kind bread pudding. I’ll miss hearing about his fun getaways and winnings at the Beau Rivage and getting texts with pictures of the jackpots he hit on slot machines. Most of all I’ll miss watching him grin from ear to ear while playing with Christian and Eliana. And also telling them “all that laughing will turn to crying” when they started playing to rough. And most of the time it rang true. And finally, I’ll miss him ALWAYS telling me that if I need ANYTHING, to call him. Although my life will never be the same without him, I can’t help but be excited KNOWING that he is in Heaven RIGHT NOW with his Savior.

Patti Thornton

February 21, 2021

Such sad news. I remember Gerald from our youth as he was the cousin of my old best friend,Wanda LaChute Hurley. My heart goes out to his family.

Jackie Daniels

February 20, 2021

Cynthia, my thoughts and prayers are with you and the family. Hold tight to the beautiful memories.
Jacckie Daniels

Renee Cuvillier

February 20, 2021

So thankful to have known your family. You have raised some incredible kids and your wife has a precious, peaceful spirit. Your story and legacy of faith will continue on. I have witnessed your quick response in being there for your family in the good and bad times. It’s inspiring and shows us all the value of simply being there. You have lived life well.