1936 - 2020
Louis Clinton Sandidge, 84, of Navasota, died on Wednesday, June 24, 2020, at CHI St. Joseph’s Health Regional Hospital in Bryan, Texas with his loving wife, two daughters and son by his side.
Due to recent concerns surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak, calling hours limited to a gathering of 20 people or less was held from12:00 to 6:00 p.m. Monday, June 29, 2020, at Lindley-Robertson-Holt Funeral Home. The family had a private Funeral Mass at Christ Our Light Catholic Church. The rite of committal was at Oakland Cemetery. A public celebration in true Louis Sandidge style will take place and announced at a later date.
Louis was born in Huntsville, Texas, May 23, 1936, the youngest of three children and only son of Thomas and Mae (La Caze) Sandidge. At the age of two, his dear mother Mae passed away and the family moved to Beaumont, Texas where Louis, along with his sisters Marcelette and Gleta were raised. He was educated in Beaumont public schools and graduated from South Park High School in 1954. After attending Lamar College for 2 years, Louis enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in 1956. His four years in the Marine Corps were instrumental in shaping Louis into the incredible man of honor and integrity that characterized his life.
Upon returning to Beaumont after his service in the Marines, Louis began his career at Gulf States Utilities. In 1960, Louis had the great fortune of meeting Carmelene Accardo through mutual friends. From the moment he met her, there was never any doubt this was the woman he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. Louis married Carmelene in Beaumont at St. Joseph Catholic Church, October 29, 1961. In 1966, they welcomed their first daughter, Shirlene. Several years later, their second daughter, Elizabeth arrived. And finally, a few years later, they completed their family with the arrival of son, Clint.
By 1976, Louis had made a name for himself at Gulf States and was promoted to a management position which resulted in the family moving to Madisonville, Texas. After only 3 years, Louis was again promoted to Regional Manager and moved the family to Navasota, Texas in 1980. Louis would call Navasota home for the rest of his life. This is the place where he and Carmelene chose to raise their children and establish their most cherished friendships.
Louis truly loved living in Navasota and dedicated himself to serving the community. An active member of the Grimes County Chamber of Commerce, Louis was named President of the Chamber in 1983 and again in 1985. In 1987, he was named Grimes County Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year. That same year, his company recognized Louis as the Gulf States Utilities Economic Developer of the Year.
But Louis did so much more for his community than a list of accomplishments could do justice. More than anything, Louis just made people feel special. He welcomed everyone into his home with opened arms and treated his kids’ friends just like they were part of his family. Louis had the unique ability to make people feel loved and included no matter who they were.
Louis was a dedicated member of Christ Our Light Catholic Church in Navasota. At various times, he served on the Parish Council board and was actively involved in volunteering and fundraising for the church. In addition, Louis was a proud member of the Knights of Columbus Navasota Council 9367. He greatly cherished this group of men and found such great joy spending time and Serving with them.
Louis was so proud to call Navasota home. When asked later in life where he was going to live during retirement, Louis always responded with astonishment. “I’m going to retire in Navasota… where else would I live? That’s home! It will always be home.”
While continuing to live in Navasota, Louis was asked to take on a new position at his company in 1987 that required him to work the majority of each year in Austin, Texas. Not wanting to move the family from his beloved hometown, Louis made the commute to Austin almost weekly for the next 15 years, where he worked as Director of Governmental Affairs for Gulf States/Entergy. He considered this role as the most fulfilling of his illustrious career. During his time lobbying in Austin, Louis made friendships and created memories that lasted the rest of his life. To this day, all who knew him in Austin remember his incredible kindness, unforgettable sense of humor, infectious laughter and unshakeable integrity. Almost 20 years since he left Austin, the door man at his old office building still remembers and asks about Louis. He truly made a lasting impact on every life he encountered. Rumor has it that even Boudreaux and Thibodeaux were devastated by the news of Louis’ passing.
In 2002, after a 41-year career at Gulf States/Entergy, Louis retired to spend more time with his wife, children and grandchildren. His unquestionable love for his family was never more on display than during his retirement years. Louis and Carmelene were almost inseparable during these sunset years. Louis was fiercely dedicated to his wife. He loved and cared for her above all others until his last breath. In addition, Louis was so incredibly proud of his three children and spent every possible moment imparting wisdom and loving and encouraging his treasured kids. Possibly, more than anything, Louis’ grand children were his heart and joy. No matter how far he had to travel or what obstacles might be in the way, Grandpa never missed a birthday party, dance recital, school play, baseball game or any other event where his grand children were involved. The bond he formed with these grand babies is almost indescribable. And the legacy and influence he leaves behind through them will impact generations to come.
Louis was preceded in death by his father, Thomas Alfred Sandidge; mother, Marcelette “Mae” La Caze Sandidge; stepmother, Mary Lou Sandidge; sister, Dorthy Jane Sherman; father-in-law, Nick Accardo and mother-in-law, Sarah Accardo.
Louis leaves behind the love of his life and his wife of 58 years, Carmelene Accardo Sandidge; daughters Shirlene Mahoney and her husband Bob of Lufkin and Elizabeth Sandidge of Nagodoches; a son Clint Sandidge and his wife, Amy of Houston. The most loving and joyful Grandpa to ever live, Louis leaves behind three precious grandchildren: Maegan Mahoney Rich and her husband Jonathon; Nathan Louis Sandidge; and Lillian Grace Sandidge. Louis is also survived by his two sisters, Marcelette Broussard and Gleta Haggard, who he loved dearly and his brother, Thomas Sandidge and his wife Beth. Uncle Louie leaves behind many beloved nieces and nephews and a great number of friends.
The Sandidge Family would like to express their deepest gratitude to the doctors, nurses and staff at CHI St. Joseph’s in Bryan and Navasota for the kindness, compassion and dedicated care they provided to Louis during his last days.
In lieu of usual remembrances, the family has requested memorials in Louis’s name to Christ Our Light Catholic Church, 510 Manley, Navasota, TX 77868 or a favorite charity.
God truly broke the mold when he created Louis Sandidge. He has fought the good fight… has finished the race… and his eyes are now fixed on Jesus. While our hearts are filled with sadness at the loss of this incredible man, we find comfort and joy knowing he is resting in peace with our loving God of grace and mercy. What an amazing life! You will be greatly missed but never forgotten.
You are invited to sign the guestbook and leave condolences for the family at www.lindleyrobertson holt.com.