Vincent De Paula was a friend to all he met and beloved by those who knew him. He spent each of his God-given 93 years as a true server and a giver, always grateful for all he had and those he held dearest. His kind and humble heart, evidenced by his unconditional love and generosity for others, was a true reflection of the love he had for Christ.
Vincent was born March 7, 1925 in Rockford, Illinois, and resided in Hammond, Louisiana for most of his life. His parents were hard working strawberry farmers who taught him the value of hard work, and of serving the Lord. At the age of 11, his father suddenly passed, and Vincent and his brothers worked the strawberry fields alongside his mother, while he maintained his schoolwork, his humility, and his caring nature.
In 1943 Vincent nobly served his country as a field medic in World War II. After the war, Vincent married the love of his life Lou Anna. She was his advocate and confidant, who encouraged and supported his pursuit of a college degree, by utilizing the G.I. Bill. True to his experience and passion for others; Vincent earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Pharmacy from University of Mississippi in Oxford working nights to support his wife and two sons, who were born during his time at Ole Miss.
After graduating in 1952, Vincent was co-owner of Ozone Drug Store in Hammond and later opened a pharmacy and family business of his own, Livingston Drug Store. It truly was a family run business where every member participated. This afforded him the privilege of cultivating in his children the character and ethics that made him the man that he was. He would personally hand-deliver relief to the homes of the sick, and was sure to cheer their spirits a little in the process.
Vincent delighted in many interests, especially in his retirement. He was an avid collector and restorer of antique clocks, and appreciated antiques as relics of nostalgia. He loved going to movies with his family and watching football on the weekend, especially when his alma mater, Ole Miss took on his home state’s LSU team. His favorite pastime was fishing and he enjoyed teaching his children and grandchildren the skill. Vincent was active in the Hammond community. He was a member and past Grand Knight of The Knights of Columbus, a past President of Young Men’s Business Club, and a member of the Holy Ghost Church Choir.
His quick smile and laughter, inexhaustible love, and his devotion as a provider, not only brought joy to his family, but also to the many in the community fortunate enough to know his company. His great desire in life was to serve God and others, and to love and care for his treasured wife, children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. If there was a need, he wanted to meet it. If it were broken, he would fix it. The impact on those he knew and loved were incalculable, and he undoubtedly left a lasting imprint on all who knew him. He taught his children to love recklessly and give sacrificially, to demonstrate love through their actions, to value family and friends, and understand that simple acts of kindness can effect real change, one person at a time.
Vincent is survived by his five children, Butch DePaula and wife Mary Ann, Larry DePaula and wife Cheryl, Brian DePaula and wife Paula, April DePaula Becquet and husband Jim, and Margaret DePaula Picou and husband Donnie. He also leaves behind his grandchildren Melissa DePaula Staniec and husband Jeff, Mike DePaula, Marty DePaula, Corey DePaula and wife Tawny, Stevie DePaula Caterina and husband Jeremiah, Becky DePaula Guidry and husband Jai, Tim DePaula and wife Julianna, Taylor Goodyear Burgess and husband Corey, Graham Goodyear and wife Ashley, Landry Picou Braud, Brennan Picou, and twelve great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death, by his beloved wife of forty-nine years, Lou Anna Guagliardo DePaula, his son Michael DePaula, and his grandson, Hudson Andrew Picou.
Donations can be made in honor of Vincent S. DePaula, Sr. to the Richard Murphy Foundation.
To view and sign the family guest book, please visit www.harrymckneely.com.