Those were the words of John Quitman Hyde IV: former Lafayette police chief, a unique raconteur, a fixture presiding at Red's and a personality that wouldn't quit.
The chief's life ended last week at the age of 72. He spent the last 24 years battling the limitations and occasional setbacks from a stroke he suffered in 1981. In spite of communication challenges and restrictions on movement, he lived his life to the fullest.
Quite often it took a gentle game of charades to figure out what he was trying to say, but it worked. He knew what he wanted to say, and he prevailed. On occasional visits at his home it was a ritual to go through albums of pictures, boxes of mementos, newspaper clippings, and plaques and pictures on the wall. Each visit required repetition of the process, but it was great being able to relish past experiences, especially those we shared. And many laughs came with them.
When I came into office in June 1980, I got to know the chief and engage his strong personality before his stroke. He was full of excitement at the prospect of running a police department. Sitting across the desk from him, I heard his ideas of what he wanted to accomplish for the Lafayette Police Department. There was good reason to be optimistic about his goals. After all, the chief had a highly commendable background of law enforcement and investigation. He was charged up and ready to go, and he did a great job. Unfortunately, it only lasted 14 months.
The stroke left him paralyzed on one side with very little ability to speak. With therapy and determination he persevered and established a unique way to communicate. And within that communication, his strong and vibrant personality was intact. A lesser man would shy away from society, but not the chief. He made his presence known and felt.
He had strong family support over the years as well as a long list of friends who enjoyed a friendly joust and/or encounter. Being a friend of the chief was a privilege, and it was fun. He and I saw eye to eye in the area of politics, and in that respect communication seemed easy. Most all comments came in pairs of words. Mention Ronald Reagan, and the comment was, "good man, good man." He probably knew the names of most people who would stop to talk with him, but he just made it simple and called everybody "baby." He had nicknames for everybody he liked and those he didn't like, and sometimes an "s.o.b." might slip in.
John Q. Hyde was a "good man, good man" in the truest sense of the word. He was a husband and father, a true family man. He was a law enforcement officer, something he was proud of. And he was the chief ' leaving an indelible print on the city of Lafayette and the people with whom he came in contact.
So long, chief, and may you finally rest in peace.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
Women sue over sperm mix-up; Romney on campaign trail; Ebola patient was released from hospital and more national and international news for Thursday, October 02, 2014.
State Rep. Joel Robideaux, R-Lafayette, surprised few in the Hub City Wednesday afternoon when he made (semi) official what most of us have known for months: He is running to replace Joey Durel as city-parish president.
Louisiana's first black Republican state senator since Reconstruction — who was a Republican before he was a Democrat before he was a Republican again — is accusing Democratic U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu of using the black community for votes and providing nothing in return.
LSU's governing board has backed new hospital privatization contracts that give hospital managers greater ease to leave the deal and fewer restrictions about must-have services.
U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu is courting young voters in several appearances across Louisiana this week, talking about her support for legislation that could lower students' college costs.
Stage 4 vet takes on cancer and reminds us all what it really means to get involved.
Is Mary fading as Vitter solidifies his lock on the fourth floor?
Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration has renegotiated contracts for six LSU hospital privatization deals, hoping to reach a compromise with federal health officials that will keep Medicaid dollars flowing to the privatized patient services.
Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu is defending her record on gun rights, seeking to rebut sharp criticism from the NRA in a state where the right to bear arms is given special constitutional protection.
Citizens, you have less than a week to register to vote in the Nov. 4 election. Remember, if you don’t vote you can’t complain about the outcome. Well, you can but it’s kind of hypocritical.
After being forced out by its former landlords last year, the community garden has a new location and a 10-year lease.
The party says it has hit a milestone, reaching 10,000 registered voters in the state.
Defensive captain Junior Galette is disgusted by the Saints' sluggish start.
The use of $60 million in Louisiana's public school financing formula to pay for nearly three dozen charter schools violates the state constitution, a statewide teachers' union claimed Monday in a lawsuit.
February trial date indicates parties were unable to negotiate a settlement.
There was a time when United Ballot had a political stranglehold so tight on Lafayette’s black community it was nearly unbreakable, but that grip might be loosening.
The race for Lafayette city marshal may not be the most exciting of this year’s local political contests, but it could prove the most historic.
With the DA’s race too close to call and negative media coverage of Mike Harson on the ebb, will challenger Keith Stutes take the gloves off?
Gov. Bobby Jindal has been viewed as a health care policy wonk, and he's tried to build on that image ahead of a likely 2016 presidential campaign, positioning himself as the candidate with substantive ideas.
Jerry Jones watched what he called the best effort he's seen in 25 years as owner of the Dallas Cowboys in the first half, and that was before Tony Romo had the longest scramble of his career and DeMarco Murray finished off yet another 100-yard game.
Two of the most recognizable women in Republican politics, Sarah Palin and Mary Matalin, have been heavily involved in Louisiana’s current election cycle.
Even though the Louisiana Democratic Party has thrown its support behind former Gov. Edwin Edwards’ congressional bid, national Democrats are not expected to follow suit.
“[Mike] is no longer the energetic ADA that his recent ad is trying to portray. I just think Mike needs to get the hell out.” — Kermit Harson, DA Mike Harson’s brother
The New Orleans Saints have listed Jonathan Goodwin as questionable for Sunday night's game in Dallas, raising the prospect that second-year pro Tim Lelito will start at center for the first time.