Barbara Chopin Frazer
LAFAYETTE - On Holy Thursday morning, March 28, 2013, at the age of 78, Barbara Chopin Frazer left this world to witness the joy of the Resurrection first hand. Born in Lafayette on August 12, 1934 to Claude Armand and Blanche (Broussard) Chopin, Sr., she was the oldest of their three children. Barbara graduated from Mt. Carmel High School and then attended the University of Southwestern Louisiana. She then worked in various secretarial roles in Lafayette before moving to Birmingham, Alabama with her former husband, William J. Frazer. There she and Bill welcomed their only child together, a daughter, Nancy Love. Barbara was a completely devoted, loving mother to Nancy. Although each experienced numerous chronic medical challenges they faced them together, supporting each other with loving care. Barbara found work at a Birmingham veterinary clinic where she was dedicated to her employer, the pets and their owners she served so lovingly. She worked there until she and Nancy returned to Lafayette to be near her family.
When her beloved Nancy passed away suddenly at the age of 41 in June 2012, Barbara was devastated and medically unable to live on her own. Through the friendship, support and unconditional love extended her by caregivers at AMG Specialty Hospital, as well as the staff and residents of Maison de Lafayette, she found not one, but two homes. In their care, her wounded soul and spirit were also healed. Barbara became social again and learned to go on, regaining a zest for life, experiencing the value of loving friends and family. During this time she also met the priest at Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center, Fr. Ambrose, who tended to her spiritual needs. Wherever she was, at Lourdes or AMG, he sought her out and visited her, inspiring her faith at the exact moments she was in need. Thus, Barbara experienced a conversion back to her faith and a strong devotion to our Blessed Mother Mary who guided Barbara back to her divine Son, Our Lord, Jesus. Her transition from despair to joy and gratitude was grounded in her renewed faith, an amazing gift for all to observe. She ALWAYS expressed her appreciation for the care provided her, even when achieving comfort was not easily accomplished. Her positive attitude and appreciation for any small thing done for her was a blessing to all and had a particular impact on those around her, especially the nursing and medical staff.
Barbara is survived by her devoted sister-in-law, Camella Chopin; her nephew Carey Chopin, his wife Cindy, and their children, Caleb, Benjamin, Mary Grace, Elijah and Matthew Joseph; and, her Godchild and niece Cassie Chopin Dupuy, her husband Eric, and their children Emma Claire, Madeline, and Noah; as well as numerous cousins.
She was predeceased by her beloved only child, Nancy Love Frazer; her parents, Claude A. and Blanche B. Chopin, Sr. of Lafayette; her sister, Mary Helen; and brother, Claude A. Chopin, Jr., all of Lafayette; as well as her former husband, William J. Frazer of Birmingham, AL.
In accordance with Barbara's wishes, her body has been accepted for training and research by the Anatomical Board at LSU Health Science Center in New Orleans. It was her desire that others benefit in some way from studying the health challenges she experienced. Appreciation is extended to the LSU Health Science Center Anatomical Board staff and Boyd-Brooks Funeral Home for their assistance in assuring Barbara's wishes were honored.
A Memorial Mass will be celebrated be in the cafeteria at AMG Specialty Hospital, 310 Youngsville Highway (Highway 89) at 3:00 pm on Friday, April 12, 2013. Fr. Richard Kalinowski, Chaplain at University Medical Center, who tended to Barbara's spiritual needs when she was a patient there, will be the celebrant. Fr. Kalinowski introduced Barbara to his homeland's ' Black Madonna', Our Lady of Czestochowa, to whom she developed a strong spiritual devotion. A celebration honoring Barbara's life will follow. Musical selections for the service will include: 'The Old Rugged Cross'; Annie Karto's rendition of 'Hail Mary, Gentle Woman' and 'Let it Be'; and, Aaron Neville's rendition of 'I Bid You Goodnight'.
The family would like to acknowledge the following for the loving care and compassion offered Barbara during her illnesses and struggles: Dr. Bradley Blappert, his colleagues, and staff; the staff of the surgical unit Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center; and, the AMG Specialty Hospital administration and staff who went above and beyond what was needed and provided Barbara's special angel, friend, and expert wound care nurse, Beth Knight, RN, who healed wounds which were most difficult to heal---those of the heart and soul, as well as the body. Additionally, thanks are extended to the staff of Paramount Hospice for their care and support assuring Barbara's comfort in her final two weeks. All involved in her care made such a powerful impact on her life, and provided the family comfort and support during the difficult days as Barbara's journey ended.
The family also extends thanks to: the staff of University Medical Center who loved and cared for Barbara as a patient; and as Nancy's coworkers, knew her as a devoted mother, grieving with and supporting her through Nancy's death and, maintaining contact with her; to the staff, residents and volunteers of Maison de Lafayette Nursing Care facility for their compassion, love, support and sense of family extended toward Barbara. They remained faithful friends and checked in on her throughout her struggles. Barbara was supported by her 'sisterhood family', through frequent visits from her dedicated sister-in-law, Camella and her sister, Wanda, who were joined by Barbara's cousin, Mary Odille. Together, the 'sisters' shared in her continued sense of joy, hope and humor lending family love and support. Our hope is that all might reach the place of faith, joy and contentment Barbara was able to find during her final 8 months. It was inspirational to be a part of that time in her life, as witnesses to the power of her faith.
In lieu of flowers, please consider memorial donations in Barbara's name to Mt. Carmel Elementary School in Abbeville, LA.