Donald William Clayton

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Donald William Clayton passed away on Oct. 31, 2018, at the age of 82 in Montgomery, Texas. He will be deeply missed by those that knew and loved him.

Funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, at Honaker Funeral Home in Slidell.

Interment will follow in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Slidell.

Don was born July 10, 1936, in Bakersfield, Califa. His family relocated to Lake Arthur, where Don grew up and finished high school. In 1959, Don received a bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. He began his professional career with Superior Oil Company as a production engineer. Over his 40-year career in the oil industry, he held various supervisory positions in North America, the Gulf of Mexico, South Africa, South America, the North Sea, Sicily and New Guinea. In 1970 while working at Superior Oil in Lafayette, Don developed an “all-inone” procedure to set and cement well liners which is still used today. In 1985, he joined Burlington Northern to eventually become to the CEO of Meridian Oil/ Burlington Resources. Under his guidance at Meridian Oil, the company became the seventh largest holder of natural gas reserves in the United States. In 1993, he co-founded Voyager Energy Corporation and served as president and director. Don finished his working career as CEO of Howell Petroleum in Houston, Texas. In 2006, Don was inducted into the LSU Alumni Association’s Hall of Distinction for his accomplishments in the petroleum industry.

Aside from his professional career, Don loved to travel with his family. It was not unusual for Don and Gloria to take a road trip to hear a good country music show or watch a grandson’s baseball game. Some of his favorite hobbies were working on antique clocks, fishing and spending time with his family and telling stories. Don was an enthusiastic LSU fan, especially the Tiger football team. He attended many LSU basketball, baseball and football games during his college years. After college, he continued his support and traveled to watch the Tigers play ball at many of the SEC venues.

Don never met a stranger and was welcoming to all those that crossed his path. He was selfless and giving in every way; incredibly intelligent and full of zeal. He was always positive and giving. He had two quotes in which he believed in, “It is always important to give back to society” and “If it is meant to be it is up to me.” His legacy will live on through endowments he and his wife, Gloria have set up, such as the Donald W. Clayton Graduate Scholarship Program in Engineering at LSU. Don made many philanthropic contributions during his life but perhaps the Lake Arthur United Methodist Church was one of his favorites.

Don was preceded in death by his parents, Lester Dewey Clayton and LaVora Miller Clayton; and his grandson, Ryan William Smith.

Those left to cherish his memory are his wife and the love of his life, Gloria Ann Pichon Clayton; children, Gethyn Clayton Smith and husband Mitchell Robin Smith, John Clayton and wife Jenifer Clayton, and Ann Clayton Nolen and husband Michael Windsor Nolen; grandchildren, Courtney Ann Smith Breitenbach and husband Cameron Pierce Breitenbach, Lauren Ann Clayton, Steven William Clayton, Megan Nicole Clayton, Kaleb Ezekiel Clayton, Hannah Lauren Clayton, Clayton Windsor Nolen, Carson Michael Nolen, and Colton Donald Nolen; granddaughter-in-law, Ashley Brown Smith; great-grandsons, Turner Ryan Smith, Pierce Ryan Breitenbach and Beckham William Breitenbach; brothers, David Charles Clayton and wife Linda, and Marshall Gaylord Clayton and wife Carita; and umerous other family members and countless friends. Pallbearers honored to serve will be Steven Clayton, Kaleb Clayton, Clayton Nolen, Carson Nolen, Colton Nolen, Aaron Pichon, Kalon Pichon and Robin Smith.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution in honor of Donald William Clayton to The Lake Arthur United Methodist Church, 323 New Orleans Ave Lake Arthur, La. 70549.