Braxton Isham “B.I.” Moody, III

Sunday, September 17, 2023
Braxton Isham “B.I.” Moody, III

Published in Jennings Daily News September 17, 2023

CROWLEY — A Requiem Mass will be held on Monday, Sept. 18, 2023, at 2 p.m. at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church in Crowley for Braxton Isham Moody III, 97, who passed away peacefully at his family home surrounded by his children on Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2023. The Very Reverend Msgr. Keith DeRouen, pastor of Our Lady Queen of Angels Church, in Opelousas, will officiate at the services. Lectors will be his nephews Douglas A Moody II and Charles A Moody II. Interment will immediately follow at Woodlawn Cemetery.

Mr. Moody was born on Feb. 4, 1926, and lived in Iota, Rayne and Crowley. He graduated from Rayne High School and attended Auburn University before serving in World War II. He later attended Southwestern Louisiana Institute (UL) in Lafayette, where he graduated with a B.S. Degree in Accounting.

During World War II, he served honorably in the U. S. Navy in the Pacific Theater on board the aircraft carrier USS Randolph. He fought in three major battles: Iwo Jima, Okinawa and the Philippine Liberation, plus numerous offensive maneuvers against Japan before the war’s end.

He married his high school sweetheart, Thelma Theresa Hebert on June 14, 1947, and they had nine children. Rosalind Robertson (Sam), Braxton I. Moody IV, Valerie Hensgens (Dennis Sr.), Beverly Lagroue (Harold), Kathy Hundley (Doug), Kevin Moody (Tracy), Charlotte Leonards (Bryan), Stephen Moody (Dawn), Elizabeth Gielen (Bryant). He was a loving grandfather to 49 grandchildren, 101 great grandchildren, and was blessed to meet his great, great granddaughter Livi Jane. He is also survived by his sister-in-law Claire Moody, as well as the mothers of his grandchildren Victoria Harris Moody and Jeanne Franques Rivet.

Mr. Moody was preceded in death by his wife of 70 years, Thelma Hebert Moody, his parents Braxton Isham Moody, Jr. and Mabel Amy Moody Bienvenu, his brothers Douglas Alvin Moody Sr. and Charles Armstrong Moody Sr. (Carol), his sister Ann Bienvenu Richard (Jimmy) and his beloved grandson William Moody Hensgens and great grandson Joe Oliver Laprairie IV.

His business career began with Public Accounting as a founding partner of Moody Broussard Poche and Guidry, then progressed to restaurants as Chart House, Burger King and Popeye’s, Louisiana State Newspapers, FNB of Lafayette and other banks, and L’even Oaks Farm. He always noted, “These early and modest successes were all due to my dedicated professors at S.L.I. (UL) in Lafayette who provided knowledge and guidance to my business career.” Upon later reflection, he also noted, “my longtime friend and business partner Billy Trotter and I accomplished most everything we wanted to do. I would change a few things if given a chance but not many.”

When UL Lafayette named the School of Business Administration for him, they summarized his life story and business career in their tribute, “As a youth in poor financial circumstances, Moody hitch hiked to the university in Lafayette from his home in Acadia Parish. The years that followed his graduation saw him rapidly mount the ladder of success to a place of prominence in accounting, banking, newspapers, restaurants, farming, oil and gas and real estate and other fields. Yet as he evolved into a dynamic figure in the boardroom of major corporations, he never relinquished old values and old friends.”

In his later years, Mr. Moody was humbled to be the UL Alumni Association Spring Gala honoree in 2006 and to receive an honorary Doctorate Degree from UL in 2017. He was also inducted into Louisiana Political Hall of Fame Museum in 2016 and he and Mrs. Moody was honored as the Community Foundation of Acadiana Leaders in Philanthropy for Acadia Parish in 2017. He also enjoyed his association with the SAR.

His accolades were many, but he will first always be first remembered for his steadfast faith in God, the love of his wife Te and their children, loving each newborn baby put in their arms, for Sunday gatherings as he grilled three barbeque pits of chicken while listening to Tennessee Ernie Ford’s spiritual music, for riding his horses Dinah, Trigger and Roller, for fishing from the banks of Cramer’s Canal, to Cypremort Point to the Gulf of Mexico with family and friends. He understood the struggles of life and was generous with his time in helping others regularly known to be at Paco’s in Rayne offering guidance over biscuits and coffee. He followed the War Eagles, Ragin Cajuns, Tigers, Pios, Cougars and more. He was quick witted, always with a smile and called his children by name until the very end. He was blessed to see many sunsets over his L’even Oaks pond, a Cypremort fishing pier, and a Destin beach front. He was often heard to say, “the sun sets on a day we will never see again.”

Pallbearers, who will carry him to his final place of rest, will be his grandsons Braxton Moody V, Hunter Armstrong Moody, Tyler Moody, S. Andrew Moody Robertson, Dennis Hensgens Jr., Hans Hensgens, Michael Hensgens, David Braxton Hensgens, Joseph Lagroue, Thomas Moody Lagroue, John Douglas Hundley, Erik Moody Hundley, Richard Kevin Moody II, Benjamin Armstrong Moody, Bryan Leonards, Jr., Nicholas Moody Leonards, Stephen Michael Moody II, John Braxton Moody, and John Bryant Gielen. Ira Magnon, his longtime property manager, driver and attendant, who was always there when needed, will likewise serve as a pallbearer.

Gift bearers will his granddaughters Rosalind Robertson Alexander, Anne Elise Robertson Doise, Elisabeth Robertson, Victoria Moody Valicevic, Meredith Moody Emory, Gretta Hensgens Trahan, Valerie Hensgens Lyons, Mary Gayle Hensgens Anzalone, Christina Hensgens Heinen, Mary Claire Moody Lagroue, Laura Hundley Umbricht, Mary Hundley Samy, Sara Hundley McKay, Katherine Hundley, Katherine Moody McCormick, Caroline Moody Jones, Claire Leonards Hoang, Anne Theresa Leonards, Gracie Leonards Taylor, Ellen Leonards Domengeaux, Jane Leonards Hundley, Sarah Leonards, Audrey Leonards, Anna Kathryn Moody, Margaret Gielen Guinn, Emily Gielen Cullen, Caroline Gielen, Annie Gielen, and Rosemary Gielen.

Mr. Moody will always be remembered for having said, “Don’t cry for me. Life will go on as it always has from time immemorial. I never did like endings or goodbyes, so I’ll just say to my family and friends, until we meet again, please forever remember me as loving you.”

The family is forever grateful for the medical care rendered by his physicians Dr. Robert Aertker, Dr. Ronald Daigle, Dr. Samuel Shuffler, Dr. Michael Dibbs, and Dr. John Chapman, as well as the compassionate and most attentive care offered by Hope Healthcare and Hospice with Donna Martin, Jenna Miller and Amy Faul in attendance. First Option Home Health was his long-time provider of excellent, reliable care with his lead nurse Sam Lemoine. His barber and friend Tom Johnson also kindly visited him regularly.

He was able to live out his years at home because of his faithful caretakers Ira Magnon, Margie Hayes, Sophia Lewis, Samantha Thomas, Patricia Collins, Katherine Webster, Akeela Dugar, Lakaysha Jones, Gabrielle Manes, Serena Lebine, Amy Landry and Shawanna George.

In lieu of flowers, the family would be grateful for donations in his name to the UL B.I. Moody III College of Business Administration, Notre Dame High School, and St. Thomas More High School.

The family has entrusted Geesey-Ferguson Funeral Home with all arrangements. Visitation will be on Sunday, Sept. 17 from 4-8 p.m. with recitation of the rosary at 6 p.m. Visitation will continue at the funeral home on Monday, Sept.18 from 10 a.m. until 1:30 p.m.

Published in Jennings Daily News September 17, 2023