Robert Whitt

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 19, 2008

ALEXANDRIA, La. – Services for Robert Leslie “Les” “The Zoo Man” Whitt, 56, of Alexandria, formerly of Natchez, who died at Ochsner Foundation Hospital, in New Orleans, will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday at the Alexandria Riverfront Center with Brother William Huddleston officiating.
A graveside service will follow at 6 p.m. at Greenlawn Memorial Park Cemetery under the direction of John Kramer and Son Funeral Home in Alexandria.
Visitation will be from 4 to 9 p.m. today at the Alexandria Riverfront Center and from 9 a.m. until service time Wednesday.
Mr. Whitt received a heart transplant in 1994 at Ochsner’s and was an advocate for organ donation and loved speaking for Louisiana Organ Procurement Agency whenever possible.
He was passionate about his service to the citizens and administration of the City of Alexandria. He was director of the Alexandria Zoo for 34 years and received the Dunbar Award for Civil Service in 1993.
Mr. Whitt was recognized for his progressive and innovative zoo exhibit designs. He joined the American Zoo and Aquarium Association as a professional fellow member at the age of 16 and has served the organization in many capacities including Accreditation Inspection Team Leader. He served on a number of committees, representing the Alexandria Zoo in worldwide conservation efforts for endangered species.
Mr. Whitt’s talent as a musician, particularly a Hammond B-3 player, was renowned and he played with many local and regional musicians. He was always involved with the youth and was a mentor to young zoo professionals, teen volunteers, Boy Scouts and musicians.
Mr. Whitt will be sadly missed by his loving wife of 34 years, Lee Ann Whitt; two daughters, Sarah Mathews and Hanna Lee Whitt, all of Alexandria; two special friends, Kimmberley and Lanie Bourgeois, both of Prairieville; two brothers, James M. Whitt, of Natchez, and John V. Whitt Jr. of Dauphin Island, Ala.; and a number friends and relatives.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Friends of the Alexandria Zoo.

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