Albert Richard Driver, Jr., born on August 27, 1945, was known by many names. If you knew him from “the Grove” (i.e. Cedar Grove), you knew him as “Dicky” and could usually find him getting into mischief with Mickey Joiner – yes, you read that right, it was Mickey and Dicky. As he got older, “Dicky” became “Dick.”
He was many things to many people. He was an uncle, a daddy, a Papaw, and he was a soldier who believed in protecting his family and his country.
1st Lieutenant A.R. Driver, Jr. volunteered for the Army Special Forces during Vietnam. He was a Green Beret. He survived a devastating attack on his camp in Laos. He survived gunshots and explosions and he never understood why he was one of the few who survived, but, little did he know, he had a lot to live for.
He had a future wife, Kathie Suzanne Monday, to live for. He had 3 daughters , Danielle Driver-Roussel (May 5, 1980), Deann Jaclyn Driver (June 24, 1984), and Darcy Marie Driver (September 6, 1990), that awaited for him in his life. He had nieces and nephews to live for. He had a sister, Elizabeth Phillips, to live for. He had future grandchildren, Sutton Richard Driver “Papaw’s Bub” (March 6, 2013) and MacKayla Milczarski “Papaw’s Baby Girl” (March 15, 2018), to live for. He had friends and he had family.
Dick was tougher than he gave himself credit for. He survived a war. He survived a heart surgery and stroke in 2010. He survived sepsis and C.Diff. in 2014. He survived shingles and herpes encephalitis of the brain in 2017. Although he struggled physically with epilepsy caused by the herpes encephalitis, he also survived a brain bleed in 2018 and a stroke in 2019. In the words of his favorite actor, John Wayne, “Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.” And that is exactly how he lived his life – courageously.
He was courageous for his friends and family and for his country to the very end. After suffering a stroke on Monday, January 21, 2019, he underwent a surgery to remove the blood clot. Concerned for his wife who was struggling with stroke recovery at Promise Hospital in Shreveport, his sheer will pushed him through stroke recovery and enduring seizures while in the hospital. After 12 days of fighting at the hospital and being shattered by the devastating loss of his wife, on Saturday, February 2, 2019 at 12:56 a.m., Dick passed away in his sleep and joined his wife just 36 hours after she had passed away.
Although he will be missed greatly by his friends and family and his death was a shock to everyone, we all know that for 42 years it was always “Dick and Kathie.” They were a unit for 42 years, and we are comforted knowing that they are together, guarding over all of those left behind as they always did.
On Thursday, January 31, 2019 at 11:59 a.m. at Promise Hospital in Shreveport, Kathie Monday Driver traveled “somewhere over the rainbow,” leaving this life to start a new life, joining her mother, Billie Nelson Monday, and her father, William Horace Monday, along with multiple aunts, uncles, and cousins – where they’re probably cooking because the Nelsons always congregate in the kitchen. That day, her children, Danielle Driver-Roussel, Deann Driver, and Darcy Driver, lost their Mama. Her husband, Albert Richard Driver Jr., lost his wife. Her grandchildren, Sutton Driver and MacKayla Milczarski, lost their Mamaw. Her brother, William Terry Monday, lost his baby sister. Two families, the Nelsons and the Drivers, lost an aunt, a cousin, and a sister-in-law. And last but certainly not least, LSU lost their most diehard football and baseball fan, and Bath and Body Works lost their most loyal candle buyer in Shreveport-Bossier.
Following two ischemic strokes she had at the end of November and complications that included coding during reintubation, sepsis, and pneumonia, her body was worn and began shutting down. Her soul went, in the words of one of her favorite songs, “to be with the spirit in the sky.” Everyone that knew her loved her, and working 30 years at the DMV in Shreveport, we’re convinced that everyone in the city knew her – that’s a lot of love.
Everyone that knew her knows she was casual, funny, and loved to laugh. She never wanted a stiff and sad funeral so, in honor of that, the family asks that everyone please wear either her favorite color, purple, or purple and gold clothing to celebrate her favorite team, LSU.
The family would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff at LSU Health Shreveport and Promise Hospital of Shreveport for providing the most attentive and heartfelt care to our mother during this time. In lieu of flowers, we would ask that you would consider donating to the LSU Health Shreveport Department of Neurosurgery at https://bit.ly/2Bcx4OQ in appreciation of the outstanding care they provided.
Kathie will be sorely missed but her legacy will live on for years to come in a tow-headed little boy and brown-eyed baby girl.