Jesse Joseph Castete

3 entries
  • "My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. Wow what a..."
    - Doug Fertsch
  • "Ronnie Landry Class of 1961 Vinton high school.Coach I will..."
  • "I remember Coach Castete as always sharing a smile. Very..."
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1933 - 2014 Jesse Joseph Castete passed away peacefully on Friday, Aug. 29, in a local hospital surrounded by his loving family as a result of an automobile accident. Jesse was born Sept. 3, 1933, in St. Landry, La., to Leo and Ezora Dugas Castete. He attended Marion High School where he was an All-District football and basketball player and a member of the 1952 state champion 880-yard relay track team. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees from McNeese State University. Jesse was a four-year letterman in football and a standout running back at McNeese. During his years with the Cowboys, he received the R.L. Cline Sr. Most Valuable Player Award in 1954 and 1955 in memory of G.W. Billy Cline, was selected for the All-Conference team in 1954 and 1955 and received honorable mention All-American honors in 1955. His 1,969 career-rushing yardage ranks him 14th on the all-time Cowboy list. He was the first McNeese Cowboy drafted by the NFL. He played professionally for the Chicago Bears and the Los Angeles Rams. Jesse was inducted into the McNeese Athletic Hall of Fame in 1982. Following his professional football career, he entered the coaching ranks first at East Aurora High School in Aurora, Ill., followed by Vinton High School in Vinton, La., where he served as athletic director as well as head football and track coach. He finished his high school coaching career at Stephen F. Austin High School in Port Arthur, Texas, where he also served as head football coach and athletic director. He joined the athletic department at Wharton County Junior College in Wharton, Texas, in 1966 as an assistant football coach and defensive coordinator. He also served as head track coach and in 1971 he became head football coach. During his time at WCJC, the Texas Sports Writers Association named Jesse one of the top three junior college football coaches. In 1975 he joined the football staff at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, where he served as defensive coordinator and secondary coach. During his nearly 25-year coaching career - and later his career as a college administrator - Jesse touched the lives of hundreds of young people as both a teacher and mentor. He was an example of professionalism, dedication and perseverance. He completed his career at Lamar University serving 17 years as an administrator. First as the assistant director of housing, then director of housing and finally as assistant director of the physical plant. He retired in 1996 and returned to the Lake Charles area. Jesse grew up in Lake Charles in a house adjacent to the 16th fairway at the former Pine Shadows Golf Course. He took up the game of golf early in his coaching career and it became a lifetime passion. He is survived by his beloved wife of nearly 30 years, Ralynn Fischer Castete, formerly of Stuttgart, Ark.; his daughters, Susan Culbreth and husband Rusty, of Bryan, Texas, and Ann Cody of Helena, Mont.; grandchildren, Ashlie, Abby and Ty Culbreth, and Amber and Julia Cody; five great grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews; and his mother-in-law and father-in-law, Syble and Gregory Fischer of Stuttgart, Ark. He was preceded in death by his wife and the mother of his children, Emogene Lanier Castete; his parents; and his sister, Shirley Woodward. The family wishes to thank Dr. Luke Williams, Dr. Maureen Lannan, Dr. Stephen Castleberry, Dr. Walter Ledet Jr., the administration and staff at West Calcasieu-Cameron Hospital, especially the ICU staff, and the staff at Cornerstone Hospital for their extraordinary and compassionate care. Graveside services will be held at 3 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 2, at Consolata Cemetery, 2300 Country Club Road, in Lake Charles under the direction of Johnson Funeral Home. The Very Rev. Aubrey Guilbeau will officiate. A gathering of family and friends will be held at the McNeese Stream Alumni Center, 600 E. McNeese St., Sept. 2 from 4-6 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Jesse's memory to the Jesse J. Castete Endowed Scholarship through the McNeese Foundation at Box 91989, Lake Charles, LA 70609. Words of comfort may be expressed to the family at

Published in The Beaumont Enterprise on Sept. 1, 2014
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