Home Acadiana Richard Zuschlag, Co-Founder of Acadian Ambulance Passes Away

Richard Zuschlag, Co-Founder of Acadian Ambulance Passes Away

by KQKInews
4 minutes read

Acadian Ambulance Co- Founder Richard Zuschlag has passed away, according to a statement released by Acadian Companies, the parent company of the ambulance service that got its start in Lafayette in 1971. After planting its roots, Acadian grew to cover most of Louisiana and eventually to area states.

In the statement, Acadian Companies said,

“It is with the heaviest of hearts that we share with you the passing of our friend, mentor, and leader Richard Emery Zuschlag. Richard fought the hard fight that so many with cancer and its complications have endured. While we mourn our extraordinary loss, we are comforted in knowing that he is no longer suffering. He is now in the loving arms of his Lord, in whom he had unwavering faith.

Richard was a much loved and admired agent of change, not only in the state of Louisiana but across the nation. The lives he affected through his vision, generosity, inspiration, and leadership are countless. Whether a friend, employee, peer or patient, all of our lives were changed due to his undeniable determination to make a difference.

His legacy endures through his beautiful family, and in every life saved, every patient helped, and in every battle he waged to ensure that all people had access to high-quality medical care. He never backed down when fighting for the things he loved most: his family, his employees, and the communities he served.

His legacy also lives on in the company he tirelessly worked 53 years to grow and nurture. Acadian Companies is not just a successful organization but also serves as an example of how servant leadership, high integrity and unwavering determination create success, not for one, but for all.

We will forever be changed, forever be grateful, and forever be better because of who Richard was and the lessons and legacy he has left us. He treated everyone with respect and was constantly striving to bring people together for the greater good. It is up to all of us to honor this legacy by living and leading by his example and his faith. Because of Richard, Acadian is stronger than ever, and in his honor, we will carry on his life’s work.

Special thanks go out to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Dr. Charles Burnell, Dr. Jason Breaux, Paul Hamilton and the many friends and healthcare providers who attended to him.

Please continue to pray for Richard, his family, friends and all those whose lives have been forever changed by this loss.

Information regarding services will be provided when available. We humbly ask you to please respect the privacy of the family while arrangements are being made.”

Zuschlag co-founded Acadian Ambulance in 1971 after working for Greenville Broadcasting Company and Westinghouse Electric Company Space and Defense Center. He was instrumental in developing the Lafayette 911 system and is responsible for leading the successful implementation of Acadian’s strategic and operational initiatives company-wide.

Richard has received numerous honors and distinctions over the years, including James O. Page/JEMS Leadership Award in 2019, Pinnacle EMS’ Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016, the 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the Healthcare and Healthcare Services category for the Gulf Coast Region and Inc. magazine’s 2005 Entrepreneur of the Year, Honorable Mention, for his efforts in coordinating Hurricane Katrina rescue efforts. He was also inducted into the Louisiana Political Hall of Fame, named a “Louisiana Legend” by Louisiana Public Broadcasting, honored by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s Alumni Association at its 2019 Spring Gala and received the Jewell P. Lowe Humanitarian Award from 232-HELP.

Richard has headed fundraising efforts for many organizations including the Boy Scouts, United Way, schools, universities and churches. He was named king of the 2005 Washington, D.C., Mardi Gras and has received several community and civic awards, including the Lafayette Civic Cup, Boy Scouts Distinguished Citizen, Golden Mike, Marketer of the Year and Louisiana Businessman of the Year.

Richard is a graduate of the Capitol Institute of Technology.

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