Vivian Joseph "V.J." Gianelloni Jr., 87, passed away peacefully on Dec. 31, 2006, at Lane Regional Medical Center in Zachary. A 1939 graduate of St. Stanislaus in Bay St. Louis, Miss., and a 1942 graduate of LSU, V.J. was an outstanding athlete at both, including playing football for LSU from 1937-1940. While playing football for LSU, V.J. and his fellow guard, J.W. Goree, were known as the "G Boys." In 2006, V.J. was selected for the St. Stanislaus Athletic Hall of Fame. During World War II, V.J. served with the 526th Armored Infantry Battalion and was the commanding officer of the security company for Gen. Omar Bradley's 12th Army Group headquarters from its organization in Normandy until VE Day. At the end of the war, he was mustered out as a captain and subsequently served in the reserves, completing his military service as a major. He received a Bronze Star and the Combat Infantryman's Badge for his wartime service. Following the war, V.J. coached football at Catholic High in Baton Rouge and received his master's degree from LSU in 1949. He managed MTG Ranch, on Longwood Plantation, and later was the owner and manager of Laurel Lea Shopping Center. He was a partner in the Cook with Gian Real Estate firm based at Laurel Lea. In 1976, he was appointed as the first head of the East Baton Rouge Parish Animal Control Center. During his tenure, he oversaw the relocation and modernization of what had been the Baton Rouge SPCA into the current facility. V.J. served as head of the Animal Control Center until 1983. V.J. was active in many local social, civic and religious organizations. He served as a leader of Riverside 4-H Club. He was president of LSU's "L" Club. He was also president of the Capitol City Kiwanis Club and served on the International Agricultural Committee of Kiwanis. He was a member of the Louisiana Cattlemen's Association and the Louisiana Farm Bureau. LSU selected V.J. to serve on the Advisory Committee for the School of Veterinary Medicine. He was for many years a member of the Krewe of Tucumcari. V.J. and his wife Jeanette donated the land for St. Jude Catholic Church and V.J. served on various committees at St. Jude and as an usher with St. Jude for many years. He was a member of the Baton Rouge Diocese Layman's Council under Bishop Sullivan and was a founding member of several Knights of Columbus councils, including the LSU and St. Agnes councils. For the last few years, V.J. had resided at the Louisiana War Veterans Home in Jackson.
He is survived by a brother, Giles Gianelloni of Sarasota, Fla.; former wife, Jeanette Singleton of Baton Rouge; five children, V.J. "Jay" III, James "Buzzy," Julie, Douglas "Gigger" and Victor; 12 grandchildren and 24 great-grandchildren.
V.J.'s parents, two brothers, daughter, Marcia Lynn "Muffet," and second wife, Anne Glass, predeceased him.
V.J. also assisted, along with his wife Jeanette, in the care of five nieces and nephews, following the deaths of their parents: Sherry Singleton Vasser, Bobby Brent Singleton, Marcelle "Penny" Gianelloni Bennet, Arthur Louis "Al" Gianelloni and William Douglas "Billy" Gianelloni.
Arrangements entrusted to Rabenhorst Funeral Home, 825 Government St. Interment in Roselawn Memorial Park.
Jeanette Catherine Singleton Gianelloni
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