Named after her grandmother, Melina Guillory, our Melina was the daughter and sixth child of Levy Nugent and Florida Marie Charrier. She was born in Avoyelles Parish in a small Creole and Cajun community known as Bayou Jack.
A schoolteacher, Melina did not marry until she was nearly 26 years of age. Her father's pet, no man seemed good enough for his favorite daughter. On November 24, 1925, she was wed to Horace Beauvais and in 1932 they had their first and only child, Dorothy Marie.
1932 was a joyous and tragic year for Melina. A few months after Dot was born, her 12 year-old brother, who she had helped raised and loved like a son more than a brother, was struck by a vehicle and killed on his way to her house. Losing young Robert was something she never truly got over.
Eventually, Horace opened a small general store, and the family lived in the back of it. Melina, never one with idle hands, worked in the store, raised chickens and picked cotton on neighboring lands to help ends meet.
Having made a good living with the store, Horace packed his family off to the up and coming town of Maringouin in Iberville Parish and established the town's general and grocery store, then called Beauvais's. The family did so well here they were able to build a large, two-story home on the bayou and became respected members of the community.
The family went on to stay in Maringouin - Melina's granddaughter and her family live in the large home there still - until their deaths. A hard-working, smiling woman, she lived to see and enjoy two grandchildren and four great-grandchildren before Alzheimer's took her mind. The last ten years of her life were spent at her daughter's house, being cared for with the love and attention only family could give.
Melina was the last surviving child of eleven children. She passed away peacefully four months after her only daughter, Dorothy, at home. She was a diligent, joyful woman who brought smiles and much love to her beloved family. She is greatly missed.
Horace Joseph Beauvais
1909–1988 (m. 1925)