Published 2:10 pm Wednesday, February 4, 2015

John L. Peytavin died at 3:26 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2015, after a courageous battle with leukemia.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 58 and a half years, Betty Najolia Peytavin; sons Stephen (Jeanne), Michael (Jenny), Malcolm (Celeste), Gerard, Mark (Tanya), Lance (Anne); daughter, Anna Laurie; 18 grandchildren; two great grandchildren; sisters, Marie P. Waguespack and Marguerite P. Hebert; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Ludger G. Peytavin and Carmelite LeBesque Peytavin.

John L. Peytavin was born in Union on April 25, 1932, where he was raised. He graduated from Romeville High School in 1950 and earned a Bachelor of Philosophy degree from Loyola University in 1953, before serving for two years in the United States Army Infantry (First Lieutenant).

Returning to Loyola, he received his Juris Doctorate degree in law in 1957. He then joined the law firm of Martin and Himel in Lutcher in 1958, which over the ensuing years evolved into Martin, Himel & Peytavin, and finally Martin, Himel, Peytavin & Nobile.

He was the indigent defender for St. James Parish and town attorney for the town of Lutcher from 1958 through 1979, assistant district attorney for the 23rd Judicial District (St. James, Ascension and Assumption Parishes) from 1979 to 1985 and legal advisor to the St. James Parish Council and School Board during that same time period.

In 1985 he was elected as a 23rd Judicial District Court judge without opposition, and thereafter was re-elected twice, sitting until 2002 when he reached the mandatory retirement age for judges.

He then served as an ad hoc judge all over south Louisiana for over a decade, hearing his last case in 2014.

Judge Peytavin was also a faithful member of numerous civic and professional organizations, including the Knights of Columbus (3rd and 4th Degree), Lions Club (Melvin Jones Fellowship Award and Pumpkin Patch Guide), St. James Association for Retarded Children, St. James Historical Society, American Bar Association, Louisiana Bar Association, 23rd Judicial District Bar Association, St. Joseph’s Church Parish (Lector) and St. James Community Theatre.

“Pops” was also the best father, coach, fan, story teller, grandfather, great-grandfather, travel companion, Red Sox rooter and all around Patriarch a family ever had, and he will be greatly missed.

Visitation will be on Thursday, Feb. 5 at Rose Lynn Funeral Home from 6 to 9 p.m. with K. C. Honor Guard from 7 until 8 p.m.

Visitation will resume on Friday, Feb. 6 at the funeral home from 9 until 10:45 a.m., followed by a Mass with Christian Burial at 11 a.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church and Cemetery in Paulina.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the Greco Community Home at 444 Browns Bend Road, Alexandria, LA 71303, (318) 487-6047, would be appreciated.

Rose Lynn Funeral Services in Lutcher is in charge of the arrangements. To sign and view the family guestbook, visit