| Leverne Edward Perry|
(Businessman, rodeo performer
|Born|| January 4, 1932 |
Sieper, Rapides Parish, Louisiana
|Died|| March 27, 2016 |
The only child of Jesse Leverne Perry (1908-1993) and Goretha G. Perry (1912-2001), Perry was born in rural Sieper in Rapides Parish west of Alexandria. An accomplished cowboy, Perry traveled the rodeo circuit across the American South to Madison Square Garden in New York City. Rapides Parish Sheriff William Earl Hilton, a long-time Perry friend, recalled that Perry pioneering the art of jumping off a horse on the left side, instead of the customary right side.
From 1960 to 1966, he was host on KALB-TV, the NBC outlet in Alexandria, of the weekend children's program, Leverne Perry and the Little Wranglers, for which he brought in a number of big-name Hollywood actors, including the late Michael Landon of Bonanza. Perry had a particular concern for special-needs children and founded the program "Horses and Handicaps." Through his role as president of the Amicus Club Rodeo, he was a fundraiser for St. Mary’s Residential Training School in Boyce, north of Alexandria. He owned Leverne Perry Shoes in Alexandria and served during the 1970s as a member and president of the Rapides Parish Police Jury, the equivalent of the county commission in most other states. Another police jury president widely known in the community was L. B. Henry of Pineville, who held the top leadership post for thirteen years. Brian Duke was a two-term jury president. Still another veteran juror was Edgar Hathorn.
On October 19, 1991, Perry finished in fifth place with 8 percent of the ballots cast in the race for Alexandria city marshal.
From 1987 to 2014, Perry was the executive director of the Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeders Association, in which capacity he was involved in the expansion of gambling at horse racetracks. He helped in the development of the strongest quarter horse bred in the nation. He was instrumental in youth scholarships. He was honored by the Louisiana Rodeo Hall of Fame and the American Quarter Horse Association, which presented him with its Lifetime Achievement Award and the Gordon Crone Special Achievement Award. On April 9, 2016, Perry was posthumously inducted into the LQHBA Hall of Fame.
Perry, who was divorced, was survived by five daughters and their husbands, Sonny and Karen Rush, Julie and Dana Normand, Javier and Jill Gutierrez, Larry and Leigh Lepinski, and Heath and Amy Grimes, twelve grandchildren, and three great grandchildren. Services were held on March 29, 2016 at the Gerald A. Mangun Center at the Pentecostals of Alexandria. He is interred along with his parents at Fellowship Cemetery in Hineston in Rapides Parish.
- Goretha G. Perry. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on June 16, 2017.
- Melissa Gregory (March 28, 2016). Service set for Perry, champion for Louisiana quarter horses. The Alexandria Town Talk. Retrieved on June 16, 2017.
- Max Lindsey (March 28, 2016). KALB family and Cenla community remembers Laverne Perry. KALB-TV. Retrieved on June 16, 2017.
- Leverne Perry obituary. The Alexandria Town Talk (March 28, 2016). Retrieved on June 16, 2017.
- Leverne Perry. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on June 16, 2017.