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Loretta Byrd

“I will lie down and sleep in peace for you alone, O Lord make me dwell in safety” (Psalms 4:8).

Loretta Sue Wheat Byrd, a lifelong resident of Bogalusa, has earned her wings and gone to her heavenly home. Loretta was born on Oct. 13, 1957, and passed away Friday, April 30, 2021, after a long, courageous battle with multiple health problems. Her precious time on earth came to a close at 9:04 p.m., surrounded by her family members at St. Tammany Parish Hospital in Covington.

Known for her tireless work at the Bogalusa High School guidance office for many years, Loretta was the wife of the late Coach Alan Byrd. Loretta and Alan were both very well known in Bogalusa for their work with youth of Bogalusa and their dedicated devotion to family. The two were a welcome sight in Bogalusa. Alan and Loretta are again reunited, now in heaven.

Loretta’s life revolved around her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She loved being a maw-maw and took on the task happily.

Loretta was also a great cook and her chili and fresh-made chocolate brownies were a big favorite.

Loretta is survived by her parents, Willie and Sue Wheat; a son, Toby Byrd; daughter and son-in-law, Niki and Brian Pierce; grandchildren, Tyler, Summer (Brooklynn Brock) and Shyanne Byrd and Isabella Pierce; great-grandchildren, Mallerie Byrd and Jackson Gill; brother and sister-in-law, Clifton and Allison Wheat; sister, Cheryl Hughes; father-in-law, Alton Byrd; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Mike and Kaye Byrd, Keith and Rhonda Byrd, Lance and Cecilia Byrd; nieces and nephews, John Michael Byrd, Patrick Byrd, Ryan Byrd, B.K. and Sarah Hughes, Erin Byrd, Lindsey Martin, Elizabeth Byrd, Karlie Wheat and Justin Hughes; great-niece and nephews, Charlotte Martin, Emi Hughes, Talyn Love, Christian Martin and Ian Hughes; and also numerous aunts and uncles and friends.

Loretta was preceded in death by her husband, Coach Alan Byrd; mother-in-law, Doris Byrd; a niece, Shannon Love; maternal grandparents, J.C. and Bessie O’Quinn; and paternal grandparents, Hayward and Minnie Wheat.

Loretta was an active member of Annunciation Catholic Church.

Visitation was held at Poole-Ritchie Funeral Home in Bogalusa on Tuesday, May 4, from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m., and will continue on Wednesday, May 5, from 9 a.m. until the service time of 11 a.m.

The Rev. Kelly Penton will officiate the services. Pallbearers will be Cliff Wheat, Tyler Byrd, Lance Byrd, Keith Byrd, B.K. Hughes and Justin Hughes. Interment will follow at McGehee Cemetery.

Be strong the grace that is Jesus Christ.