Natchez lost a great man in Gunning

Published 12:05 am Thursday, June 4, 2015

As I lay down, Thursday, May 28, thoughts of a wonderful and dedicated person fell heavily on me, and I felt compelled to share how wonderful he was.

Dear Natchez and surrounding areas, on Friday, May 22, 2015, Natchez lost one of the most caring and compassionate people I have ever encountered, Louis Gunning.

Mr. Gunning was the Stewpot director for 24 years. He was a very loving and caring person, which in today’s society is hard to find.

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I am sure you all have heard the saying, “Grown Men Don’t Cry.” Well, let me tell you, Mr. Gunning has so much compassion that he didn’t mind shedding tears, especially when he was joyed and delighted.

He was a great man who worried about the Stewpot until the end.

Mr. Gunning would be visually in pain and still would deliver food that other carriers could not. I am a volunteer carrier on Fridays and would offer to make deliveries on some Saturdays so Mr. Gunning wouldn’t have to; however, who he was, Mr. Gunning would decline my help and make the deliveries himself along with his loving wife, Mrs. Mary Gunning.

Mr. Gunning would also worry about the yearly food drive, “Stamp Out Hunger,” which is a program promoted through the Post Office. This year, Mr. Gunning along with Mrs. Amanda Jenkins made sure I got some of the Natchez High School athletes to assist on the Saturday of the food drive. How I wish I could have assured him that as long as I have breathe in my body, I would make sure the Stewpot’s obligation with “Stamp Out Hunger” would be fulfilled each year going forward, as well as any assistance I could provide with other Stewpot projects.

I would also like to take this time to thank Coach Larry Wesley, who was there with his teams, the Natchez High School track (girls and boys), football and baseball members, and Mrs. Abby Goldblatt for your help during “Stamp Out Hunger.” And we’ll be looking forward to your assistance each year.

Excuse me for how I feel; however, I do feel that there should have been lots more people at Trinity Episcopal Church on Tuesday, May 26, to show their appreciation and respect to such a wonderful person as Mr. Louis Gunning. I especially feel there should have been more public officials in attendance. I would like to extend a special thanks, however, to Mr. David Carter on behalf of the Board of Supervisors for extending their future assistance, if needed.

I also got the opportunity to meet Mr. Gunning’s children. I must say they are just as loving and compassionate as their father.

May God continue to bless them and their mother, and I hope to someday be as great a person as Mr. Gunning was.


Jacqueline Marsaw is a volunteer and member of the Stewpot board of directors.