Obituaries

Fulton C. “Butch” Felterman, Jr., Local Businessman and Philanthropist, Passes Away


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A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated for Fulton C. “Butch” Felterman, Jr., by Father Herbert Bennerfield III on Monday, February 14, 2022, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Patterson, Louisiana. Butch died at age 94 on Thursday, February 10, 2022, peacefully surrounded by his family in his home on the Lower Atchafalaya River in Patterson. Visitation will be held on Monday, February 14, 2022, from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at Ibert’s Mortuary in Patterson. Interment will be at St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery in Patterson.

Butch was born on September 30, 1927, at the F.B. Williams Cypress Company logging camp on the shore of Lake Verret in Assumption Parish, Louisiana. He was delivered by a midwife in his family’s cabin at the camp. Following the Great Flood of 1927, the camp, where his father worked, closed, and his family moved to his father’s hometown of Patterson.

Butch grew up playing on the Lower Atchafalaya River in a flatboat his father had built for him and his brother Ernest, sparking his lifelong love for boats and the water. After graduating from Patterson High School in 1944, he attended LSU for one year before the desire to become the captain of a shrimp boat drew him back to Patterson, where he bought the Tossup—the first of over 40 shrimp and oil field boats—and founded Felterman Shrimp Company.  

Throughout his childhood years, Butch had tolerated a little red-headed, freckle-faced girl who lived in a big house down the street. It wasn’t until two years after he graduated from high school that Butch came to the sudden realization that this little freckle-faced kid had metamorphosed into a strikingly beautiful young lady. After inviting her over to listen to his new record player in his family’s living room and making small talk until it was time for supper, he was hooked on Sylvia Folse. They were married on September 5, 1949 and spent the next 70 years happily together.

While running Felterman Shrimp Company from 1948 to 1968 and then switching gears from shrimping to servicing the offshore oil and gas industry with Galaxie Marine Service, Inc., from 1965 to 1997, Butch was active in his community and family life. After he and Sylvia welcomed six children, Danny, David, Lee, Jon, Lisa, and Jody, they eventually made their home on his beloved Lower Atchafalaya River.

Butch was a co-founder of the Felterman Foundation, a co-founder and past president of the Wedell-Williams Memorial Foundation, the 1958 king of the Shrimp Festival based on his shrimp production on the Courageous, a member and co-founder of the Louisiana Shrimp and Petroleum Festival King’s Club, a past chairman of the board and member of Twin City Fisherman’s Cooperative Association, a past president and king of Krewe of Adonis, a past president of Krewe of Grillades & Grits, a charter member of the National World War II Museum, a past president of the Rotary Club of Patterson, and a past director of the Offshore Marine Service Association. He was also a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, the Bayou Old Time Engine and Power Association, the St. Mary Industrial Group, Patterson Knights of Columbus Council No. 1710, the Krewe of Hephaestus, and the Mystick Krewe of Louisianians.

Over the years, Butch received a number of awards, including Morgan City Rotary Citizen of the Year 2016/Lifetime Achievement Award, the Community Foundation St. Mary Citizens of the Year Award 2015 (along with Sylvia), the Prestigious Historic Preservation Medal presented by the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Louisiana Association of Museums’ Elizabeth McLundie Bolton Award, the Patterson American Legion Russell J. Breaux Citizen of the Year Award, the Wedell-Williams Pilots Association Airman of the Year Award, and the St. Mary Parish Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year Award 2012. He received recognitions from the Louisiana Aviation Hall of Fame and from Rotary as a Paul Harris Fellow.

Butch never retired and remained active well into his later years. He enjoyed family gatherings at The Old Warehouse and Fishermen’s Light, time with Sylvia, reading, woodworking, antique engines, flying, and traveling.

Butch was humble and never boastful, intelligent, even-tempered, easygoing, and inspiring. He was a generous philanthropist, devout Catholic, visionary, great decision-maker, and knowledgeable local historian and preservationist. Despite his many involvements and successes, nothing meant more to him than his faith, wife Sylvia, children, grandchildren, extended family and friends, and the Lower Atchafalaya River. His loved ones will miss his unconditional love, friendship, comforting and calming demeanor, strength, positive outlook, good advice, and vast knowledge.

Butch is survived by his children Danny Felterman and wife Linda, Lee Felterman and wife Jan, Lisa Felterman Kornegay and husband Brightman, and Jody Felterman and wife Elizabeth, all of Patterson; 10 grandchildren Katie Felterman Schexnayder, Tyler Felterman, Erin FeltermanNichols, Ben Felterman, Marc Felterman, Jon Felterman, Jr., Emily Kornegay LaMonica, Will Kornegay, Parker Felterman, and Luke Felterman; and 18 great-grandchildren.

Butch was preceded in death by his wife of 70 years, Sylvia Folse Felterman; parents, Fulton C. Felterman, Sr., and Una B. Felterman; sons David Felterman and Jon Felterman, Sr.; grandson Chad Felterman; sisters Alfreda Felterman Laws, Margery Felterman, and Hon FeltermanVersaggi; and brothers Ernest Felterman and Roy Blanchard.  

Pallbearers will be Butch’s grandsons Ben Felterman, Jon Felterman, Jr., Marc Felterman, Will Kornegay, Tyler Felterman, Parker Felterman, and Luke Felterman. The honorary pallbearer will be Chad Felterman.  

The Felterman Family extends its gratitude to Butch’s longtime caretaker, Gail; recent caretakers Jackie, Paula, and Vickie; his outdoor caretaker and friend, Andrew; Heart of Hospice staff, especially Stephanie, Bonnie, and Niecey; and Memorable Obituaries.

Family and friends may view the obituary online by visiting www.iberts.com and are encouraged to share their condolences, cherished memories, love, and support for the family.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Ibert’s Mortuary, Inc., located at 1111 Lia Street, Patterson, LA 70392. 985-395-7873. The service will be live streamed on Ibert’s Mortuary’s YouTube channel via www.Iberts.com.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Wedell-Williams Memorial Foundation benefitting the Wedell-Williams Aviation and Cypress Sawmill Museum and sent to P.O. Box 38, Patterson, Louisiana 70392.

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