Al Shea Dies
August 20, 2009
Photo from the Broadcast Museum
Al Shea, born Alvin Francis Caserta, Jr. in New Orleans on November 23, 1927, was a popular local actor
and theatre critic. He spent his early childhood in Paducah, Kentucky, where his father obtained employment. While
still a boy, his parents divorced. His father remained in Kentucky, where he re-married. His mother returned with her
son to her family in New Orleans. Al's name was then officially changed to Alvin John Shea, Shea being his mother's maiden
name. At the age of ten, Shea was heard on WWL radio as Jackey, in the serial, "The Life of Peggy Hill." His stage
debut was as Tip in The Land of Oz, in 1941, at Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré.
served in the Navy, and was a Tulane graduate. In 1955, he joined the staff of WDSU-TV, replacing Ed Nelson on "Tip-Top
Space Ship," as Sparky. He then had success as Deputy Oops in "Adventures in Fun," in 1960. A bigger success
followed when he was the voice of Pete the Penguin on Mr. Bingle broadcasts. He was also producer of the station's "Second
Cup" show, with Bob and Jan Carr and served as entertainment critic on "Midday" (1963–73), with Terry
Flettrich, where he interviewed many stars of the theatre and cinema. Throughout his career, Shea wrote on various facets
of the Fine Arts and of entertainment for varying media, and was often heard on radio, as well.
an actor, Shea was seen in New Orleans in Our Town, The Boy Friend, The Merchant of Yonkers, Night
Must Fall, Bye Bye Birdie, Mister Roberts, and All the King's Men. He also directed local
productions of Lo and Behold! and Life with Father. His final stage appearance was in 1998, in Puss
in Boots. He can be seen in the documentaries "New Orleans That Was" and "New Orleans TV: The Golden Age."
Shea covered theatre for several years for Gambit (until 1995), and, for twenty-three years,
was theatre critic on WYES's "Steppin' Out," with Peggy Scott Laborde. His final appearance on the program was
only two months before his death, from cancer, at the age of eighty-one. Al Shea died on August 20, 2009, in New Orleans.
His funeral mass was held at St. Louis Cathedral. (Wiki)
Attorney, soldier, governor, and jurist Francis Tillou Nicholls was born in Donaldsonville on August
20, 1834. Educated at Jefferson Academy and a 1855 graduated of the U. S. Military Academy
at West Point, he served in the war against the Seminoles. After resigning commission in the army in 1856 he began the practice
of law in Napoleonville. During the Civil War he served as captain and lieutenant colonel, K.F.S., Eighth Louisiana Infantry
In 1862 he was appointed colonel of the Fifteenth Louisiana Regiment. As a brigadier general, commanding the Second
Louisiana Brigade, he lost left arm at the first Winchester battle, October 15, 1862. He later lost his leg at the
second battle of Fredericksburg. After the war, he resumed his law practice.
NICHOLLS, Francis Tillou, attorney, soldier, governor, jurist. Born, Donaldsonville,
La., August 20, 1834; son of Thomas Clark Nicholls (q.v.) and Louisa Hannah Drake. Grandson of Edward Church Nicholls (q.v.).
Education: Jefferson Academy, New Orleans; U. S. Military Academy at West Point, graduated 1855. Served in the war against
the Seminoles. Resigned his commission in the U. S. Army in 1856 and began the practice of law in Napoleonville, La. Civil
War service: captain, lieutenant colonel, K.F.S., Eighth Louisiana Infantry In 1862 appointed colonel of the Fifteenth
Louisiana Regiment; brigadier general, commanding the Second Louisiana Brigade, lost left arm at first Winchester battle,
October 15, 1862; lost a leg at the second battle of Fredericksburg. After the war, resumed law practice in parish. Married,
April 26, 1860, Caroline Zilpha Guion, daughter, of George Seth Guion and Caroline Lucretia Winder. Children: Francis
Welman (b. 1863), Caroline Winder (b. 1865), Louisa Josephine (b. 1868), Harriet Guion (b. 1870), Virginia McDaniel (b.
1873), Margaret Guion Lawton (b. 1875), Elizabeth Guion (b. 1877). Elected governor in 1876 and again in 1888. During his
first administration he worked to rid the state of carpetbag rule. During his second administration he was instrumental
in defeating the Louisiana Lottery Company which was struggling to obtain an extension of its charter. Appointed by President
Grover Cleveland to the Board of Visitors for West Point. In 1892 appointed chief justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court.
Died, Ridgefield Plantation, January 4, 1912; interred St. John's Episcopal Cemetery, Thibodaux, La. S.R. Sources: Miriam
G. Reeves, The Governors of Louisiana (1962); Roy Clashan, American Governors and Gubernatorial Elections, 1775-1975 (1975);
anonymous member of the Louisiana Historical Society, "The Nicholls Family in Louisiana," Louisiana Historical
Quarterly, VI (1923); unpublished biography of Governor Nicholls by Evans Casso. From http://lahistory.org/site.php?pageID=31
Novelist and screenwriter Elmore John Leonard, Jr. was born in New Orleans on October 11, 1925 His earliest
novels, published in the 1950s, were Westerns, but Leonard went on to specialize in crime fiction and suspense thrillers,
many of which have been adapted into motion pictures. Among his best-known works are Get Shorty, Out of Sight, Hombre, Mr.
Majestyk, and Rum Punch (adapted for the movie Jackie Brown). Leonard's writings include short stories that
became the films 3:10 to Yuma and The Tall T, as well as the current FX television series Justified. He
passed away on August 20, 2013 in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. (Wiki)
On June 12, 2009, Alfred Clifton Hughes was, by designation of Pope Benedict XVI, succeeded
by Gregory Michael Aymond, the Bishop of Austin, Texas. Hughes continued to serve as apostolic
administrator until August 20, 2009, the date of Aymond's installation mass at Saint Louis Cathedral.
BEZOU, James Francis, leader of Franco-American affairs. Born, New Orleans, 1910; son of André
Ralph Bezou and Lydia Marie Bouligny. Education: Pinac's Institute; St. Aloysius College; St. Joseph Seminary;
Soulé College; Loyola University, New Orleans. Married, 1942, Rosalie Julie Lococo. Children: Jacques
F., A. Raoul, Pierre B., Mrs. Juliette B. Bishop, Mrs. Denise B. Garretson, Mrs. Andrée B. Carter. Worked in
import-export commerce; credit manager, Emile Schulingkamp Co. Chancellor, Belgian Consulate General, New Orleans,
1952-1969; as official lectural of L'Alliance Française, 1964, gave illustrated presentations on New Orleans and
Louisiana in Brussels, Antwerp, and Liege. Host to Gen. Charles de Gaulle as well as many other French dignitaries
visiting New Orleans. President, 1949-1974, Athénée Louisianais, a literary and cultural society organized
in 1876 by New Orleans French-speaking community. Executive vice president, New Orleans area chapter of the
Council for the Development of French in Louisiana (CODOFIL). Board of directors, program director, Foreign Relations
Association of New Orleans. Vice-president, Society of the War of 1812 of Louisiana and Founders of New Orleans.
Contributor of articles on New Orleans and Louisiana to national publications. Translated from French into English
many articles on jazz and Robert Goffin's Horn of Plenty: The Story of Louis Armstrong. New Orleans correspondent
and business agent for France Amérique, le Journal Français des Etats-Unis; owner, L'Union Française.
Awarded: French Ministry of Education's Palmes Academiques, 1949; Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur, 1960; promoted to
rank of Officier des Palmes Academiques, 1968; second American to receive Prix de la Couronne Française, 1970.
Member: Catholic church. Died, New Orleans, August 20, 1974; interred St. Louis Cemetery III.
B.R.O. Sources: Baton Rouge Morning Advocate, April 9, 1964; Crescent City Credit Courier: New Orleans Credit
Women's Club (n.d.); Robert Goffin, Horn of Plenty: The Story of Louis Armstrong, trans. by James F. Bezou (1947); New
Orleans States-Item, October 9, 1969; obituary, August 21, 1974, New Orleans Times-Picayune, August 21, 1974. From http://lahistory.org/site19.php
On Monday, August 20, 1972, President Richard Nixon and wife began a motorcade
down Canal Street a 10:45 a.m.
Born in New Orleans on August 20, 1922, Charles Schwartz, Jr. received a B.A. from Tulane
in 1943 and served in the Army as a Second Lieutenant from 1943 to 1945. He was then an Army reservist from 1946 to
1965, attaining the rank of Major. He received a J.D. from Tulane Law School in 1947, and was then in private practice
in New Orleans until 1976. He was a district counsel for the Gulf Coast District of the U.S. Maritime Administration from
1953 to 1962. On March 23, 1976, Schwartz was nominated by President Gerald Ford to a seat on the United States District
Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana vacated by Herbert W. Christenberry. Schwartz was confirmed by the United States
Senate on May 6, 1976, and received his commission on May 7, 1976. He assumed senior status on February 28, 1991. He also
taught as an adjunct professor of law at Tulane University beginning in 1977. He died in his home town on November 3,