‘Elvis’ opens inaugural program for widows and widowers

By By Natalie Stewart / American Press

Hixson Funeral Home in Lake Charles launched its LIFT program for widows and widowers Monday with a special performance by


Lake Charles City Councilman John

Ieyoub did his Elvis impersonation for a group of widows and widowers

during Hixson’s inaugural

Living Information for Today — a program that will be held monthly

to “reinforce a sense of wholeness and purpose in those

who may be feeling lost and alone.”

“It’s a social program offered to

widows and widowers,” said S.J. “Bubba” Brasseaux, marketing director at

Hixson’s. “What

we are going to do is have a meeting once a month inviting them to

all come together in a social setting. There’s no counseling

or grief therapy. We find widows and widowers have a lot in common

because they have experienced the same thing. We want to

create this social outing for them, where we provide information

that can help them with everyday life.”

Brasseaux said the program is held in other areas, but this is the first time it has been offered in the Lake Area.

“We wanted to try and bring everyone together and put smiles on their faces,” he said. “Life continues on and this is a way

that we can help them continue on in life.”

Nearly 75 people packed the Hixson Funeral Home chapel and roared with cheers for Ieyoub as he performed.

Jody Barrilleaux, LIFT director, said she was “in awe” and “shocked” by how many people attended the event.

“The bar has been set high, John Ieyoub

has set the bar high but it’s a challenge and I’m up for it to make

sure all the following

meetings are just as fun,” she said.

“I’m in shock. I’m going to cry later because I’m so excited. You go out and you invite people to things and you put it out

there, but I’m truly overwhelmed with the turn-out.”

Barrilleaux said the host each week will be “uplifting and encouraging.”

“I’ve just been listening to the community and thought it would be nice to celebrate life and where we are now,” she said.

“We felt it was important to celebrate life while we’re here and to have a good time.”

The next meeting is slated for 10 a.m. May 20 at Hixson’s, 3001 Ryan Street in Lake Charles. Mayor Randy Roach will be the