Josephine Lee Paternostro Clark

January 4, 1920 ~ December 9, 2011

Josephine "Josie" Lee Paternostro Clark, 91, went to be with the Lord on Friday, December 9, 2011. She was born in Lake Charles, Louisiana on January 4, 1920 to the late William Lee and Rita Perello Paternostro. Josie was a graduate of St. Charles Academy and Louisiana State University. She worked for the Welfare Office and several local attorneys. She also worked for many years with her parents who owned the Lyric, Delta and Palace Theaters in Lake Charles.

Josie was a lifelong member of Immaculate Conception Cathedral Church and a founding member of Sister Monica's Study Club. She and her fellow graduates of St. Charles Academy held weekly Bible studies for over sixty years.

Josie was a devoted wife and mother. Her greatest joy was her family. She was married to the late John Clinton Clark of Great Falls, Montana. She is survived by their four children: Karen C. Herpin and husband, Luther, of Kaplan, Louisiana; William K. "Buz" Clark and wife, Kathy, of Carlyss, Louisiana; Janet C. Williams and husband, Roland, of Houston, Texas; and Sheryl Clark Lawrence of Washington, Louisiana.

In addition, Josie is survived by thirteen grandchildren: Jason Herpin (Lori) of Kaplan, La.; Brant Herpin (Mindy) of Kaplan, La.; Kelly Clark (Tula) of Katy, Texas; Chris Clark (Tracy) of Sulphur, La.; Kerry Picou (Trey) of Grand Chenier, La.; Leigh Anne Clark of Sulphur, La.; Eric Clark (Tara) of Sulphur, La.; Matt Williams (Sarah) of Austin, Texas; Clint Williams of Houston, Texas; Emma Tormey (Dan) of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Eleanor Lawrence of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Rita Cueva (Brian) of Peru; and Joanna Galyen (Nathan) of Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

She is also survived by seventeen great-grandchildren Jade and Alex Herpin, Taylor Lemaire, Lance and Laine Herpin, Cole and Katy Clark, Lauren Clark, Henry and Hyat Picou, Macie and Ridge Marcantel, Canon Clark, Ava, Anna, Caleb and James Tormey; and one great-great grandchild, Parker Hebert. She is also survived by her sister, Rose Calongne, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana and her four children and grandchildren.

Friends will be received at Johnson Funeral Home, 4321 Lake St., Lake Charles, LA on Sunday, December 11 from 5 9 p.m. with a Rosary at 6 p.m. A funeral mass will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, December 12 at Immaculate Conception Cathedral Church. Burial will follow in Graceland/Orange Grove Cemetery under the direction of Johnson Funeral Home.

The family wishes to thank Kaplan Healthcare in Kaplan, Louisiana and Hospice Compassus, Lafayette, Louisiana for their loving and nurturing care. Memorial donations can be made to Immaculate Conception Cathedral Church, P. Box 1029, Lake Charles, LA 70602.

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Memories Timeline


  1. Eleanor, you couldn't have said it better!!! We had the best Grandmother ever! She will be missed but never forgotten! I love you Grandma Clark and may you rest in peace. Until we meet again….

  2. Janet, I have the most wonderful memories of your mother who always treated me with kindness and hospitality. I consider her to be the definition of a trooper, and recall the way she always let us have just enough rope. Remember when you pierced my ears? And your Mom supplied the sewing needle and potato? I do. She was COOL! Know that I am holding you and your siblings and all the family members in my heart. I send thoughts of hope and healing your way. Love Robin

  3. KK, I was so sorry to hear about your Mom passing away.Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Love, Paula

  4. Making the hour long trip to Lake Charles to see Grandma Clark was such an exciting weekend, holiday, and summer tradition! Just as soon as we'd get out of the car she'd tell us to run to the fence back to get our energy from the hour long drive out! She always had cans of Dr. Pepper in the fridge and vanilla BlueBell cups in the freezer! Fighting over which tiny flower spoon we got to use is still talked about between my sisters and I. The no-no drawer was such a temptation to get into! Playing in her bathroom with the sliding door, sitting on her bench and playing with makeup was so fun to us! She was always working a crossword puzzle in her back room where the wall was covered in our latest school picture. Visiting Grandma Clark was the best! I could go on and on with wonderful memories… Like the $20 bill she'd often slip into our hands as we said goodbye or how she stood at the door and waved goodbye as we drove away! You'll be missed on this earth, but we'll see you again once we have lived as full a life as you have!

  5. My thoughts and prayers are with all the family. I used to always enjoy going over to KK's house, which I did a lot! Mrs. Clark was always so nice and fun to visit with. She always made us feel welcome. I still miss the house on 11th St. with the door know in the middle!

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