James "Sono" Savoie

April 14, 1924 ~ October 8, 2015

Sheriff James R. “Sono” Savoie left his earthly home on October 8, 2015 surrounded by a host of family and friends. Funeral services for Sheriff Savoie are under the direction of Miguez Funeral Home of Jennings, Louisiana. Visitation will be Sunday, October 11, 2015 from 12 p.m. until 9 p. m. A Chaplet of Divine Mercy Rosary will be recited at 6 p. m. on Sunday evening. Monday visitation will resume at 8 a.m. and continue until 10:30 a.m. A funeral mass will be held at 11 a.m. at Our Lady Help of Christians Catholic Church in Jennings, Louisiana with Rev. Charles McMillin officiating. Burial will be in Lopez Cemetery in Jennings. Born in Creole, Louisiana, on April 14, 1924, “Sono” was the son of Mr. and Mrs. James B. (Myrtle LaBove) Savoie. Primarily a cattleman, Savoie also worked in the oil fields for a number of years including a tour in the Saudi oil fields. In 1980, he was elected Sheriff and Ex-Officio Tax Collector of Cameron Parish. He served his home parish for six consecutive terms-24 years- more than any other Sheriff on record for Cameron Parish. Within months of his first election, “Sono” passed a parish wide law enforcement tax to provide 24 hour patrol throughout Cameron Parish, a campaign promise he kept faithfully. In later years he again passed an additional tax to provide for deputies salaries. It was “Sono’s” goal to make the parish highways safer. In addition to the 24 hour patrol, he added radars to each car and this helped to achieve his goal of cutting down the number of deaths on our highways. He was not afraid of modern technology and to make his offices run smoother and more accurately, he installed computers in the Tax Collectors office and later in the Criminal Records Division. One modern convenience “Sono” did not need was a calculator. It was not unusual for him to compute days of tax collections or to know the balance in the General Funds- all calculations he made in his head with an 8th grade education under his belt. One of his favorite sayings was “you can have all the book sense in the world but without common sense you have nothing.” The youth of Cameron Parish held a special place in the Sheriff’s heart and he passionately vowed to protect them at all costs, even if it meant donning an Elvis wig and sunglasses for the drug rally at the courthouse. He was especially pleased to implement the D.A.R.E program in each parish school. Sheriff “Sono” was not only a highly respected leader in Cameron Parish but a friend to his constituents as well. He was known as a just and fair lawman and he kept his promise to treat all Cameron Parish citizens as equals. They knew he favored no man, neither rich or poor, old or young, dignitary or the neighbor next door all were equal in the eyes of the law. Savoie had a great vision for the future of Cameron Parish. “At one time Cameron was the number one fishing port in the nation. The shrimping and menhaden industries were big and the oil field industry was tremendous. Today those industries are not as large as they were.But now, I think we’re on the right track because we’re promoting outdoor tourism. Cameron Parish has 50 to 60 miles of accessible beachesmore than half of the beaches of Louisiana. They need to be cleaned up and promoted. There is a lot of interest in birding and wildlife refuge projects, as well as in coastline conservation. We have some of the best hunting and fishing grounds in the nation. And this is what we should be thinking of as our future.” “Sono” was a family man who doted on his four children, Michael, Phyllis, Ann and Bob as well as his grandchildren and in more recent years his great-grandchildren. His beloved wife, Hazel, who passed away earlier this year was his rock, and together they raised a large, loving and happy family. Many happy days were spent with friends and family working cattle and enjoying the excellent food Hazel prepared for the cowboys. In fact, “Sono” was the trail boss for years on the cattle drive from Creole to Johnson Bayou to winter pasture and back again in the summer. In 1957, “Sono” was part of the Cattle Rescue Project started to aid families whose revenue depended on cattle. When asked about this project for an article included in a book about Hurricane Audrey “Sono” said “Most of the cattle were identified because the men who were working them knew most of the brands. They were used to combining herds and driving them to winter or summer pasture and had a good sense of which animals belonged where. When all the cattle had been returned to the owners only a few could not be identified. These were given to the Red Cross which sold them and used the money to help the people in Cameron.” Cameron Parish, cattle, family and being Sheriff made up the man, “Sono”, but certainly those things took a back seat to his relationship with his Creator. He gave God all the credit for the things he had accomplished in his life: his loving family and friends; his home; and his work throughout the years. He definitely believed his success as Sheriff was because he allowed God to guide him. After all, he was a poor, uneducated boy from Creole. Sheriff Savoie was preceded in death by his loving wife of 70 years, Hazel R. Savoie, his parents Mr. and Mrs. James B. Savoie, brothers Lynn, Rupert, and Herbert L. Savoie; sisters, Olga S. Mudd, Marie S. Donahue, Lorraine S. Benoit; son in law, Pat Pinch; granddaughter, Sarah Ann Henry. Survivors include his four children, Michael and wife Claudia, Phyllis S. Pinch, Ann and husband Robin Roberts, and Bob and wife Sue Savoie; 14 grandchildren and 16 great grandchildren, and two more on the way; one sister, Mildred S. Sturlese; his loving nurse, Darla Kirklin and caretaker, Brenda LeBlanc.


Burial: Monday, October 12, 2015
12:00 am - 12:00 am

Lopez Cemetery

Funeral Service: Monday, October 12, 2015
11:00 am - 12:00 am

Our Lady Help of Christians

Rosary: Sunday, October 11, 2015
6:00 pm - 12:00 am

Miguez Funeral Home - Jennings

Visitation: Sunday, October 11, 2015
12:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Miguez Funeral Home - Jennings

Visitation: Monday, October 12, 2015
8:00 am - 10:30 am

Miguez Funeral Home - Jennings

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Memories Timeline


  1. My deepest sympathy and condolensces to the family. Mr. Sono was a wonderful man and a great sheriff. I am proud that I had the chance to know he and Mrs. Hazel.

  2. Keeping yall in our prayers . Hes with Maw Maw and the others watching over yall now . Love , Russell , Robin and Brittany

  3. Please except my condolences. Mr. Sono will be greatly missed by all that knew him. sending prayers and love to the family. The Wolfe Family

  4. To all of mr. Sonos family, Im deeply sorry for the loss of the rock at the center of your family. He went home to ms Hazel . All of you are in my heart and in my prayers.

  5. Saying prayers for the family. Sono was a wonderful man and miss Hazel also. As a child I would go and spend the summer with Philys and the family. This family were great people. If there anything I can do let me know

  6. Sorry to hear of Mr. Sonos passing. A good friend and a mans man. You will be missed.Our prayers are with yall. Sincerely, Chris,Bonnie and Isaac Matheson

  7. We are sending our Deepest Sympathy & Prayers to all The Family of Mr. Sono. He will truly be missed by all. Especially his friends of many, from the great Parish of Cameron. I never saw him without a Smile on his Face. May you Rest in Peace our Friend. Your Job on this old Earth is done. May God grant the family strength to face the days ahead. Tommy & Martha

  8. I am so very sorry for the loss of Sono. He was much loved and will be missed. May the Lord comfort family and friends during this time of grief. Love you all, Agnes

  9. Please accept our condolences in the passing of Mr. Sono. We know that no words can ease your pain of loss. We, also know that Mr. Sono was missing his loving wife too.. Prayers for all the family.

  10. To : My Brother-in-Law Mike Savoie and Sister Claudia Savoie. And the Savoie Family. Our Deepest Sympathies and Heartfelt Condolences on the Passing of Papa Sono. Sorry I couldnt be there with you all at this point in time, as much as I would like. But I am so Thankful to be given the opportunity to see Papa Sono when I was with you all this Summer, and for that I am grateful. Our Prayers and Thoughts Are with You as we share in your Hour of Grief. May God give You the Stent

  11. My Brother-in-Law Mike Savoie and Sister Claudia Savoie. Our Deepest Sympathies and Heartfelt Condolences on the Passing of Papa Sono. Sorry I couldnt be there with you all at this point in time

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