On Thursday morning, friends of Governor Kathleen Blanco are remembering her fondly ahead of a celebration of life service.
“I’ve always known Governor Blanco to be a person of great human compassion and that was manifested more than ever in her response to hurricanes Katrina and Rita. She asked the Cajundome to be a shelter. Little did we know that it was going to be the sheltering of thousands of Louisiana residents that were in desperate need of help,” says Greg Davis, who worked closely with Blanco to keep people safe and warm in a disaster.
“If there’s anything I can say about her its that she was sincere. She was loyal. She always wanted the best for all of the childen in school, public or private,” says Jenny Mienville, a second cousin of Blanco’s and an administrator at her alma mater, Catholic High in New Iberia.
On Blanco’s strength, Melinda Mangham said, “she had a very strong will. When she made up her mind to do something, she was going to do that. And you saw the determination in every struggle she faced, whether it was Katrina, whether it was this illness that she bared with such grace.” Mangham worked closely with Blanco on education issues.
For those wanting to come celebrate Blanco’s life and legacy, services begin Thursday in Baton Rouge. The celebration of life will last three days.
For full details on the services, click here.
On Thursday, a Celebration of Life Interfaith Service will be held at St. Joseph Cathedral in Baton Rouge from 10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. An Honor Procession will be held from 12:30 p.m. - 12:45 p.m. on the steps of the Louisiana State Capitol.
The general public may come pay their respects from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. The entrance will be through the breezeway on either side of the State Capitol steps. Inside, any handicapped, disabled or elderly people will be directed to use the main elevators to reach Memorial Hall.
Parking will be limited, so the Governor's Office is encouraging visitors to park at lots along River Road. No large bags will be allowed for any of the memorial services.
On Saturday, a Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. John the Evangelist Cathedral, located at 914 St. John St. in Lafayette. The service will last from 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Both services will be aired live on KATC and katc.com/live.
Gov. Blanco will be buried Saturday in a private service.
In lieu of flowers, the Blanco family has asked that you give to the Kathleen Babineaux Blanco Public Policy Center at UL.