Obituaries » Harry D. Lafield
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June 7, 1924 - July 7, 2018
Harry D. “Jack” Lafield, 94, of Coushatta, LA passed away July 7, 2018 at Christus Coushatta Health Care Center in Coushatta after a short illness. He was born June 7, 1924, in Coushatta to Joseph Henry “Jodie” Lafield and Florence “Doll” Jackson Lafield, who preceded him in death. His wife of 73 years, Kate Brown Lafield, also preceded him in death, along with two brothers Claude Lafield and Doyle Lafield, all of Coushatta.
Jack and Kate were married on June 26, 1943, in Bossier City, LA. Jack is survived by four children, Joseph Henry “Jody” Lafield and wife Linda of Baton Rouge; Harry Lane Lafield of Wichita, KS; Trudy Lynn Lafield Abboud and husband Jimmy of Lake Charles; and Byron Lafield and wife Linda of Shreveport. He is also survived by six grandchildren, Season Wedman and husband Mark of Wichita, KS, Abi Lafield of Wichita, Sarah Young and husband Blake of Shreveport, Matthew Lafield and wife Kelli of Baton Rouge, LA, David and Ryan Rough of Shreveport, and four great grandchildren, Jillian and Cody Wedman of Wichita, Amelia Blake Young of Shreveport, and Landry Lafield of Baton Rouge. He is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews.
Jack graduated from Coushatta High in 1943. At Coushatta, he was an excellent basketball player and track man. Both his basketball and track teams won numerous tournaments and championships. The track team won the state championship in 1943. He was very proud of those teams. His teammates were very special to him, too.
Immediately following his graduation from high school, he worked as an automobile mechanic for his brother Claude until he was drafted into the Army.
Jack served his country in World War II as a staff sergeant. He entered the Army on July 29, 1943 at Shreveport. He received his basic engineer training at Camp Abbot, OR, and went to Mount Rainier Ordnance Depot, Tacoma, WA for a welding course. On May 26, 1944, he embarked for New Guinea and served with the 137th Infantry Regiment, 32nd (Red Arrow) Division, at New Guinea, in the Philippines and in Japan. He supervised the laying, testing, and maintenance of wire communications and the adjustment and repair of communications equipment, including radio sets and wire lines. Serving as communications chief, he fought on New Guinea, Leyte, and Luzon. In addition to serving in Burma, Hollandia, the Philippines, and Japan, as a machine gunner, he fought in the Battle of Driniumor River in 1944. He received the Asiatic-Pacific Theatre of Operations Ribbon, with three Bronze Battle Stars, and Philippine Liberation Ribbon, the Good Conduct Medal, Victory Medal, and Combat Infantryman Badge
Following Japan’s surrender in the war in August 1945, Jack served for several weeks as part of the occupation forces in Fukuoka and Osaka, Japan. He returned home safely and was honorably discharged January 9, 1946.
He was an active member in the Coushatta Lions Club for many years, including the club’s annual fund raiser, the minstrel, where he was played one of “The Men on the End”. In the production, he always sang such goodies as “Strut Me Mama”, “Ding Dong Daddy”, and “Don’t Cadillac Me”. Over the years, he served on various committees for the minstrel and as a Lions Club officer, including Tail Twister.
As a young man, he loved to fish on Black Lake. In later years, he enjoyed supporting the Riverdale Academy Rebels. He frequently took his toy monkey with the cymbals with him to Rebel basketball games and was known to annoy a referee or two with it, once to the point of being asked to leave the gym! He also loved cooking for family and friends, especially fried fish, in his outdoor kitchen.
Jack was a career car and truck salesman, working until age 80. He initially worked for Strange Motors selling Fords for 48 years and later for Bolan Ford, Quality Ford, and River City Chevrolet, all in Coushatta. He probably sold a vehicle to just about every person in Red River Parish and the surrounding area at one time or another in his 50+ years of sales. A number of times, he sold a car every work day of the month. In his later career, he was honored by the local Council on Aging as “Older Worker of the Year”.
Jack loved his church, First Baptist of Coushatta, where he was first enrolled as a young child in 1927. Over the years, he served as a deacon, Sunday School Superintendent and choir member.
Jack also enjoyed politics. He served the Town of Coushatta as a town councilman for several terms.
The family will receive friends on Tuesday evening, July 10, from 6-8 pm in the Family Life Center Gym at First Baptist Church, Coushatta. Services under the direction of Rose-Neath Funeral Home will be held Wednesday, July 11, at 2 pm in the sanctuary at First Baptist. Dr. Nathan Davis, pastor, will officiate, assisted by Dr. Howard Hall. Burial will follow in Springville Cemetery in Coushatta.
Pallbearers will be Rayburn Covington, C.H. Smith, John Perkins, Paul Moseley, Tommy Glen Jones, Ted Hayes, Steve Stroud, and Roger Cason. Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church, P.O. Box 465, Coushatta, LA 71019 or to the organization of the donor’s choice.