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Gaylord Bickham

Gaylord Mouton Bickham died on the morning of Saturday, April 24, 2021, in Covington. Born in Franklinton on July 17, 1933, he was 87 years old. Mr. Bickham was a lifelong resident of Franklinton and was a graduate of Franklinton High School. He graduated from Tulane University, where he received a degree in History. He was a loyal member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity.

For many years, he owned and managed the Bickham Oil Company in Franklinton, serving Washington and surrounding parishes. He served as a director on the boards of numerous financial and business institutions. He was an active member of the Franklinton Rotary Club. Gaylord was a lifelong member of the Centenary Methodist Church and a proud member of the Democratic Party.

Throughout his life, Gaylord enjoyed a deep affection for traveling, making many annual trips across the U.S. and Europe, where he particularly loved London and Paris. He especially enjoyed New England in the fall and Paris in the spring. One of his fondest childhood memories was visiting the 1939 World’s Fair in New York City. Throughout his adult life he made weekly trips to New Orleans for dining and entertainment.

Preceded in death by his parents, Leatrice Brumfield Bickham and Mouton Bickham, and cousins, Hamilton Don Bickham, Bruce Bickham and Hope Breeden Williams, Gaylord was the scion of one of Franklinton’s founding families. An only child, he is survived by numerous cousins throughout Louisiana and Mississippi who will miss his extraordinary knowledge of history and his quick, dry wit. He was a brilliant conversationalist. His dedication to family was boundless. A tenderhearted man, Mr. Bickham avidly supported animal rescue causes and adopted many pets himself. He was a longtime member of Centenary United Methodist Church in Franklinton.

Donations in Gaylord’s memory can be made to the Mouton, Leatrice and Gaylord Bickham Endowed Scholarship at Southeastern Louisiana University. Checks or money orders can be made out to and mailed to the Southeastern Foundation at SLU 10293, Hammond, LA 70402. Credit card donations may be made online at www.southeastern.edu/givenow. Select “Other” for Designation and enter “Gaylord Bickham Scholarship,” or you may phone 985-549-5356.

A graveside funeral service will be held at 4 p.m. Saturday, May 1, in Ellis Cemetery (corner of Seventh Avenue and Bene Street/Hwy 25 in Franklinton), with the Rev. Brian Ridgedell officiating.