Death Notices

John Dell Self
January 4, 1945 – March 13, 2022

After fighting the good fight, John Dell Self, 77, of Weston, finished his race with great faith on Sunday, March 13, 2022. He was born in Transylvania, LA, on January 4, 1945, to W.D. (Buster) and Mae Self.

John Dell was a 1962 graduate of Jonesboro Hodge High School. He married his true love, Dianne Stewart Self, on July 2, 1965, and they shared nearly 57 wonderful years together. John Dell worked at various jobs in Jonesboro, but will be best remembered as the singing school bus driver and owning and operating Weston Wolf Stop with his wife, Dianne, for over 48 years. He was a deacon, Sunday school teacher, and was the music minister at Springhill Baptist Church for over 45 years. John Dell loved his life and had fun living it with always a song in his heart. He was the life of the party and everyone loved spending time with him.

John Dell was called many names: JD, Daddy, PaPa, and Pops. He was often found outside working in his garden or catching a bass on Caney Lake. He was his family’s crazy adventuresome- fish lovin’- garden growing- sports fan- let’s have a good time PaPa!

John Dell is cherished by his wife, Dianne Stewart Self of Weston, LA, his children, Chanda Self Canady and husband Scott of Jonesboro, LA, Johnathan Self and wife Patricia of Weston, LA, and Jada Self Walsworth and husband Jason of Ruston, LA; 8 grandchildren- Skyler Canady and wife Courtney, Courtney Self Bennett and husband Cody, Sladen Canady, Saxton Canady, Mason Self, Jalyn Walsworth, Jase Walsworth, and Jonah Self; 2 great grandchildren- Sailor Canady and Cali Canady; Siblings, Ronny Self and wife Virginia of Crossett, AR, Glenda Self Beebe of Anacoco, LA, and Ramona Self Herrera and husband Clyde of Plain Dealing, LA.  He is now reunited with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. W.D. Self, and his brother, Rev. Malcolm Self, father-in-law and mother-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Jack Stewart.

Visitation will be Wednesday, March 16, 2022, from 5-8 pm at Southern-Edmonds Chapel, Jonesboro, LA. Services will be Thursday, March 17, 2022, at 10 am at Ebenezer Baptist Church, Jonesboro, LA with Reverends Charlie Hammons, Don Cardin, Mac Brunson and Jason Walsworth officiating. Graveside following at Springhill Cemetery, Jonesboro, LA.

Honoring Mr. Self by serving as pallbearers will be Scott Canady, Skyler Canady, Sladen Canady, Saxton Canady, Mason Self and Cody Bennett.

Audrey Fay Burch
October 12, 1940 – February 27, 2022

Audrey Fay (Black) Burch, age 81 of Jonesboro, met her Heavenly Father on Sunday, February 27, 2022. Audrey was not one to hang around the house or spend much time cooking as she spent most every moment she could outdoors. She was blessed with a green thumb and had a wonderful talent for growing flowers. She grew them, rooted them and sold them at flea markets. She was most fond of creating beautiful flower beds. If she built one and was not happy with it then she would surely tear it down and build another one. Audrey also liked to read and she enjoyed writing stories in her free time. Audrey loved any time that she could get to spend with her sisters. She loved her family very much and she will be dearly missed by all that knew and loved her.

Those left to cherish her memory are her children, Becky (Black) Hall and Terry, Cathy Sonnier and Mike, Leslie Milberger and James; 6 grandchildren; 16 great grandchildren; 8 great-great grandchildren; siblings, Vivian Springfield, April Smith, Joel Smith, Charlie Smith, Donnie Glaze, Kenneth Black, James Black, Betty Black; a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. She is preceded in death by her husband, Burley Gaynel Burch; grandchildren, Rocky Parker, Rachel Sonnier; parents, Ruben Victor and Burlene Marie (Wilhite) Black; siblings, J.C. Black, Lonnie Black, Alice Springfield, Rachel Beauboueff, Wanda Carlton, Dorothy Horton, Sue Thornburg, G.W. Smith.

The family has planned a graveside memorial service for Saturday, March 19, 2022 at 11:00am at Henson Cemetery in Chatham with Bro. Hudie Beaubouef officiating.

Judge Jack Crozier Watson
September 17, 1928 – February 11, 2022

Jack Crozier Watson was the only Louisiana Supreme Court Justice elected from Calcasieu Parish. Justice Jack Watson passed away at 93 on February 11, 2022 and leaves a great legacy and proud family.

Jack was born in Jonesville, Louisiana. He was the son of a State Highway engineer who moved his family many times. Jack attended six grammar schools and two high schools. His connection with Calcasieu Parish began when his Father was assigned to build the “existing” I-10 bridge over the Calcasieu River. Jack went to college at 16 and attended Louisiana Lafayette (then SLI), where he was a leader on the Debate Team. He served our Country in the Korean War as a Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. Jack was stationed in the Philippine Islands after graduating from the Georgetown Intelligence School. Following his military service, Jack attended law school on the GI Bill.

Jack distinguished himself at LSU Law School by winning the prestigious Moot Court trial competition; he started his legal career at King, Anderson and Swift in Lake Charles. District Attorney Frank Salter appointed Jack Assistant District Attorney. Together they prosecuted the first large drug trial in Lake Charles. Also, Jack was on the Host Committee for the visit in 1959 by then Senator John F. Kennedy.

Jack was elected Calcasieu Parish District Judge at 35, one of the youngest ever to be elected judge in Louisiana. Judge Watson proudly performed as many as 86 marriages in one year and started the first Family Court in Calcasieu Parish. One prominent local attorney stated that “Judge Watson handled all family matters on a Wednesday night.” Judge Watson was also instrumental in getting our Juvenile Detention Center built.

In 1972, Judge Watson was elected from 21 Parishes to the prestigious Third Circuit Court of Appeals. He returned to the Philippines in 1977, after being invited as one of the few United States delegates to the International Conference of Appellate Magistrates. Jack was elected without opposition to the Louisiana Supreme Court in 1979. He then became Justice Jack Watson and proudly served our State with honor and skill on Louisiana’s Highest Court for 17 years. He served with remarkable colleagues and prided himself on not being late with his Judicial Opinions.

Jack had a passion for travel and photography. He photographed polar bears in Canada and wild animals in Africa. Jack was a Commander of the Lake Charles Yacht Club and, with his family as his crew, won the Flying Scot sailing division. Jack coached his sons’ athletic teams, and one of his favorite activities was teaching Tulane Law Summer School in Greece.

One cannot mention Jack without mentioning his wife, Sue.  They met in Law School and were married 63 years.  Jack told the story that banker Frank Field lent him $500 to get married on what Mr. Field called a “character loan.”  Sue and Jack were constant companions, worked together and were best friends.  Jack is survived by his wife, Sue, and his son, Wells, the managing partner of Baggett McCall Law Firm. Wells credits his parents for his legal career and as a lawyer cherished his Father’s invaluable guidance.  Jack was a very proud grandfather of three – Wells, Jr., Emeline and Jack, II.  He was his grandchildren’s personal photographer and will always be known to them as “Big Jack.”  Jack is also survived by his brother, Dr. Jerry Watson, a retired orthopedic surgeon.  Jack’s parents were Jesse Watson and Gladys Talbot Watson.  Jack was predeceased by his son, Carter, and his brother, Talbot. 
One of Jack’s favorite expressions was “sometimes you have to stand up and be counted.” Justice Jack Crozier Watson stood up and was counted for his 93 amazing years.  The Watson family gives heartfelt thanks for the amazing acknowledgements of our beloved Husband, Father, and Grandfather.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Episcopal Day School or to Tulane University Law School.

Jack was buried in his judicial robe alongside his family in Jonesboro, Louisiana at the Jonesboro Cemetery on March 12th. 


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