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Jack P.F. Gremillion
Gremillion in 1956
May 1956 – May 1972
|Preceded by||Fred S. Leblanc|
|Succeeded by||William J. Guste|
Jack Paul Faustin Gremillion
June 5, 1914
Ascension Parish, Louisiana, U.S.
|Died||March 2, 2001 (aged 86)|
Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.
|Education||Ascension Catholic High School (High school)|
Louisiana State University (BA)
LSU Law Center (JD)
Jack Paul Faustin Gremillion, Sr. (June 15, 1914 – March 2, 2001), was the Democratic Attorney General of Louisiana from 1956 to 1972. He is widely known for his political partnership with the 45th governor of Louisiana, Earl Long.
Jack Gremillion was born on June 5, 1914 in Donaldsonville, Louisiana to parents, William Kossuth Gremillion (1881-1939) and Genoa Henderson Gremillion (1892-1969). His father was a telegraph operator and his mother was a teacher. Jack attended high school in his hometown of Donaldsonville at Ascension Catholic High School. Due Gremillion's French descent, he and his family spoke French fluently.
Gremillion married Doris McDonald (1920-1989) and had four sons and one daughter; Jack P.F. Gremillion, Jr., William McDonald Gremillion, Wayne Francis Gremillion, Doris H. Gremillion, and Charles Mark Gremillion. Gremillion was known for his confidence, determination, and unique personality. In reference to his described character, Gremillion owned many dachshunds throughout his life, he unexplainably named them all Sam. However, "Sam" was the pen name for when Gremillion submitted articles to various newspapers and media in the Baton Rouge area.
Upon graduating from Louisiana State University with a Bachelor's degree, Gremillion attended LSU Law. Gremillion worked in the local district attorney's office and was mentored by Fred S. Leblanc, whom he later succeeded as Attorney General of Louisiana. Gremillion was a member of the American Bar Association. However, his law career took a pause when he served in World War II through the United States Army. After the war, Gremillion continued his law career and worked as a prosecutor.
Landing on D-day +4 Gremillion was an Infantry Company Commander, Company L, (3rd BN) Second Infantry Regiment, 5th Infantry Division. He was severely wounded near Le Perron France leading to the assault of St.Lo. Gremillion used his veteran status from World War II to attract veteran voters. At this day and age, it was rare for veterans to speak up about their time in the military. However, Gremillion talked about his war experience in numerous speeches. Gremillion received a Purple Heart for his bravery during World War II.
Gremillion's rise to Attorney General of Louisiana was a very unique progression. Earl Long tapped Gremillion to succeed his long-time mentor Fred S. Leblanc during his uncle's funeral, where Gremillion was attending as a pallbearer. Soon after, Gremillion defeated Leblanc and became Attorney General in 1952. Gremillion went on to serve 4 consecutive terms as Attorney General of Louisiana.
Gremillion contributed a great amount of effort in the prolonged battle between the state of Louisiana and the U.S. Federal Government in the "Tidelands" issue. The issue was centered around the offshore oil management and royalties on the coast of Louisiana. Gremillion defended Louisiana's right to the Tideland territory which he claimed was 10.5 miles off the coast. In opposition, the United States Supreme Court only granted Louisiana 3 out of the 10.5 miles. Many notable figures claimed that this was a punishment for the state of Louisiana.
Awards and Recognition
Gremillion is considered to be one of the most prestigious Attorney Generals of Louisiana through his several awards and leadership history. Gremillion was a member of many organizations, he was especially involved in the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG). Gremillion won the organization's most prestigious award, the Wyman Memorial Award, in the year of 1963. This award was presented to the most distinguished Attorney General in the country. Gremillion later served two terms as the NAAG's president in 1965. In 1962 and 1963, Gremillion sat on the board as chairman on the Southern Regional Conference of Attorneys General. As previously noted he was a member of many organizations including: The State Bond and Tax Board, the Pardon Board and the Legislative Bureau.
- '"Jack P. F. Gremillion," Who's Who in America, 1968.
Fred S. Leblanc
| Louisiana Attorney General
William J. Guste