Eugene James Walters
Born and reared in New Iberia, Louisiana, "Gene" Walters graduated from New Iberia Senior High School and attended the University of Southwestern Louisiana (USL). His interest in the funeral profession was piqued by a relative in the funeral industry and, after much soul searching, he decided to make a change from pre-med to funeral sciences.
Mr. Walters relocated to Houston, Texas where he attended, and later was graduated from, Commonwealth Mortuary School (Commonwealth Institute of Funeral Service). He has since returned to his prestigious alma mater as the invited keynote speaker of several graduating classes.
Following college graduation, Mr. Walters was drafted into the United States Army during his funeral apprenticeship and served in the Viet Nam Conflict as a combat field medic. He was discharged honorably as a highly decorated soldier of the 101st Airborne Division with numerous medals and citations to his credit. Upon his return, he completed his apprenticeship in the funeral business and went to work for his relative. Shortly after returning from Viet Nam, his uncle died, and he became the youngest general manager of a funeral home in Louisiana. He served in this capacity for 41 years, meticulously guiding the business to the success it heralds today.
Along the way, Mr. Walters received many awards in the industry. Most meaningful to him are the MOTS (Morticians of the Southwest Award) given in 1992 and the C.A. Charlet Funeral Director of the Year Award in 2001, both voted on by his peers for untiring dedication and the highest integrity within the funeral profession.
Gene recently completed his certification to become Lafayette's only Certified Preplanning Counselor, adhering him to a strict Code of Ethics developed by the National Funeral Directors Association. He has served in every capacity in the state association and served as the Executive Director for the Louisiana Funeral Directors Association, a job held for 12 years. In 1995, he was named Policy Board member to the National Funeral Directors Association where he traveled to Washington D.C. to lobby members of the Louisiana delegation on behalf of the funeral industry.
FAMILY… In 1971 Gene married Lafayette native, Phyllis Duhon. They have two children, Ross, a University of Louisiana at Lafayette graduate and Commonwealth Institute of Funeral Service graduate, and Cecile Walters Trotter, a Louisiana State University graduate.