James Clinton Hanchey died on Tuesday April 11, 2023 at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital. He is survived by his wife, Nancy Ligon Hanchey; his children: Kellie Medford (Fleet) of Atlanta, Georgia; Erin Shackelford (Hugh) of Memphis, Tennessee; and Dr. Max Hendrix of Greensboro, North Carolina. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Wood and Adelaide Medford and Parker, Max, and Charlie Shackelford; and his brother, Ben Richard Hanchey of Monroe, Louisiana. His parents, Clint and Alice Pearl Hanchey, and his brother, Dr. Robert E. Hanchey of Baton Rouge, predeceased him.
Jim was born January 10, 1936 in DeQuincy, Louisiana, where his father was principal of the high school. He attended schools in Calcasieu Parish and graduated in 1954 with honors from Lake Charles High School. While in high school, he won a national essay contest and was awarded his cash prize personally by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in Washington, DC. He attended Tulane University and LSU from which he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1958, and his Juris Doctorate degree in 1960. He was a member of several honor fraternities, including the predecessor to the Phi Beta Kappa chapter at LSU; he was a Moot Court finalist; and was president of the senior class of the LSU Law School.
In 1960, Jim returned to Lake Charles as law clerk to Judge John T. Hood, Jr. of the Court of Appeal, Third Circuit. Following his clerkship, he joined the law firm of Jones, Kimball, Harper, Tete and Wetherill as an associate. In time, Jim became a partner in the firm of Jones, Tete, Nolen, Hanchey, Swift and Spears. He practiced law with the firm for 40 years. He was president of the Southwest Louisiana Bar Association and was a member of the bar of the US District Courts for the Western and Eastern Districts of Louisiana, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and the US Supreme Court where he was administered the oath of membership by Chief Justice Earl Warren. Following retirement from the practice of law, Jim put his extensive travel knowledge to work as an international travel consultant with Partners In Travel. Business and pleasure took Jim to five of the world’s seven continents.
Jim was involved in many civic and cultural activities and organizations. He was a member of the YMBC, the Calcasieu Kiwanis Club and he served on the board of directors and vice president of The Lake Charles Symphony; the board of Art Associates; the board of the Cancer Society; the board, and as president of the Southwest Louisiana Arts and Humanities Council; and the board, and as president of the Arcade Theater Foundation. He served on the art grants panels of the City of Lake Charles and the Louisiana State Arts Council.
A graveside service for family and close friends celebrating his life will be held on Monday, April 17th at 11:00 AM at Prien Memorial Park under the direction of Johnson Funeral Home of Lake Charles.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital or Louisiana Public Broadcasting, LPB.