Parish honors Landry

Aaron E. Looney
Parish President Tommy Martinez presents retiring Gonzales Police Chief Bill Landry with a commemorative plaque during Thursday’s Parish Council meeting in Gonzales. Landry, who is retiring from the department after 33 total years of duty including 16 as chief of police, thanked his family and the residents of Gonzales and Ascension Parish for their kindness and assistance throughout his career.

Retiring Gonzales Police Chief Bill Landry offered thanks to his family and the residents of both the City of Gonzales and Ascension Parish Thursday, after being honored by the Ascension Parish Council for his years of service.

The council and Parish President Tommy Martinez presented Landry with a proclamation naming Nov. 20, 2008 as “Chief William “Bill” Landry Day” in Ascension Parish, while also presenting Landry with the first ceremonial “Key to the Parish.”

Landry will retire in January after a combined 33 years of service in the Gonzales Police Department. He began his career with the department in 1975 and was elected police chief in 1992. He will be succeeded by recently elected Chief Sherman Jackson.

Landry has also served as chairman of various law enforcement groups and currently serves on Louisiana’s D.A.R.E. Advisory Board and was recently appointed by Gov. Bobby Jindal to the Louisiana Commission on Law Enforcement.

“You’re an inspiration and we thank you for the great job you’ve done,” Martinez told Landry in presenting him with the procamation and key.

Landry thanked his family the community for their help throughout his career, adding that he looks forward to “enjoying some simple things in life”?upon retirement.

“If you ask me what I’m going to do, I don’t know. I?don’t have a clue,”?he said.

In summing up his career, Landry cited efforts by he and his department during recent hurricanes and high-profile rape and murder cases as memorable moments.

“You almost get tired of hearing the bad news,”?he said. “I?just want to get out and enjoy some good things and make sure my phone doesn’t ring at night anymore.”

Landry said he believes Jackson “will do a great job for the city,”?along with the “many fine men and women”?within the police and fire departments, Mayor-Elect Barney Arceneaux and Fire Chief Tracey Normand.

“I know this city will continue to grow and prosper,”?Landry said.

“It’s been a great ride,”?an emotional Landry said. “I wish my mom and dad were here tonight to sit with me. I?had their support when I?opted to run for chief of police. I?just wish they were here to share this with me.”

The Ascension Parish Council honored outgoing Gonzales Police Chief Bill Landry during its meeting Thursday by proclaiming the day as “Chief William ‘Bill’ Landry Day” in the parish and presenting Landry with the first honorary key to the parish. Pictured during the event are, from left: Parish Council Chairman Pat Bell, Parish President Tommy Martinez and Landry.