Michelle Duplechin Lee, 57, passed away on January 14, ending a five-year battle with cancer at MD Anderson.
She is survived by her loving husband, John W. Lee, and her two sisters, Deborah Duplechin Harkins, wife of Dr. I. N. “Corky” Harkins and Rene Duplechin Garland, wife of Eric Garland. Michelle was born in Eunice, Louisiana to Duro and Emma Grace Duplechin. She was predeceased by her son, Corey Paul and her brother, D. J. “June” Duplechin, Jr. She also had two furry kids, Gracie and Drew. Michelle was retired from Smith Barney (Morgan Stanley), as Operations Manager. She retired early so she could dedicate her time with her husband, family and friends.
She lived life to the fullest, making it her quest to put the “extra” in ordinary in life’s daily events. She was always there for her large extended family to ensure that every milestone was a memorable one, from baptisms to graduations. She would put a “Hat” on it, add a little glitter, and make magic. She became “Nanny”, “Gammie” or Auntie to those who touched her life. She enjoyed planning proms, catering dinners, carving pumpkins, decorating for Christmas, and being a part of their daily lives. Those nieces and nephews include Sean and Joshua Garland, Dionne Parks and Jude Duplechin, Gregory and Jason Harkins, Aimee Mayer, Heather Rabeaux and Joshua Butcher.
One of the family’s favorite traditions, started by Michelle and John, was gathering in Destin for Thanksgiving for the last 15 years. There was nothing better than sharing a glass of champagne on the balcony to toast each sunset with those closest to her.
While Michelle wore many hats, her greatest role was that of wife to her devoted husband, John. He was the center of her universe and she loved the be with him in all that she did----cheering on LSU and the Saints teams weekly, gardening, catching shoes at Muses Parade, playing slots at the casinos, toasting sunsets. These were her favorite things to constantly be shared with John. It was one of the highlights of her life to be wed to him in a story tale ceremony in New Orleans, second line to the Napoleon House, and celebrate with all the trimmings.
Michelle was blessed to have been supported by Team Michelle during her battle with cancer. The Team included Colleen Johnson, her lifelong friend, Yvonne Pena Butcher, her sister-in-law, and Sandra L’ousteau, her “4th Sista” from Lafayette. They complimented Rene and Deborah as caretakers and selflessly were constantly by her side in her fight to overcome her disease.
There will be a Celebration of Life in Michelle’s honor in Eunice, Louisiana on January 26 at Ardoin’s Funeral Home. Friends and Family will gather from 10-12, the Celebration at Noon with Deacon Gary Gaudin officiating, then the procession to St. Paul Mausoleum.
Family and friends may view this obituary and sign the guestbook at www.ardoinfuneralhomes.com
Ardoin’s Funeral Home of Eunice, 1301 West Laurel Ave (337)457.3371 is in charge of arrangements
May peace and comfort be with you and your family at this difficult time.
Sheriff Bobby J. GuidrozOpelousas, LA
Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you. Your love and devotion for Michelle was inspirational. May the Lord give all of “team Michelle” and your families peace as He embraces each of you with His love. God bless.
Mona and Mike ZeringueLafayette, LA
Aunt Michelle had a beautiful soul. Jon and all the family are in our thoughts and prayers. We love you all. Michelle & Collin
Michelle & Collin KellerPrairieville, LA
You always made all your friends and family feel welcome with an open heart. I herd a pastor name Tommy Nelson of Denton Bible church say no matter what you are going through live Well. That's what Aunt Michelle did. She lived well. RIP Aunt Michelle.
Kevin KuhnElton, LA
My condolences for your loss Rene' and family. May Perpetual Light Shine upon Her.
John SiffertSugar Land, TX
In every memory I have of Michelle she is sweet, smiling and happy. She was always up for an adventure, always ready to laugh. We did have some fun. I am heartbroken and sad for her family’s loss. May God give you strength at this time. She was a wonderful person.
Cindi Manuel DetrazEunice, LA
Auntie Michelle, we will miss you dearly.. it is an honor to have had you in our lives.... We will never forget the good times...Always in our hearts and prayers..
Jason Harkins and Siti VerrettLafayette, LA
We will miss you Aunt Michelle..you gave us all a good time...
Gayle KuhnElton, LA
Aunt Michelle you will be missed, although I didn't really get to spend a lot of time with you, I'll always love and miss you. Renée and family you all are in my thoughts and prayers.
Kymberly warrenDallas, TX
Dear Deborah and Rene-
So deeply sorry for the loss of your beautiful sister.
Diane Craft AngelicoMandeville, LA
My sweet Auntie Chelle...words can not truly express how wonderful of a person she was to me and to so many others. I am deeply saddened because she is no longer with us but will always cherish the many memories we have of being with her. I will miss her hugs, our talks, our laughs. Our lives will not be the same without her and if you knew her then you were truly blessed. Prayers to Uncle John, my mom Yvonne, Rene, Deborah, Colleen, and Sandra as I know you fought hard with her and were by her side every step of the way.
Heather Broussard-RabeauxAustin, TX
For the beautiful woman inside and out, may you live in peace and without pain. Your loved ones have met you at the gates and all is good. Prayers to your wonderful family left on earth. Love you so much and will miss that gorgeous smile. We had so many good times inside and outside of our office. God Bless Mich.
GLADYS PERRYMAURICE, LA
Dear Deborah and Rene’,
I was so saddened to hear about Michelle.
Gina was in her class and in Lafayette so she let me
know. What a wonderful person she was. Know you will miss her. I remember her as a beautiful little sister of yours.
Please know that I will be remembering her and thefamily at
Adoration today . God Bless and keep you all .
Cindy Breaux BrysonBaton Rouge, LA
Oh Michelle, how I have thought of you over the years since high school. I am so glad you found the love of your life and although you are gone way too soon, it sounds like you lived life to the fullest. You are with with your precious son now, and your mom and dad. Rest in peace sweetie and I look forward to seeing you again one day. Prayers for your loving husband, family and friends. You had such wonderful caregivers. God bless them all. 🙏🏻
Renee Veillon DuplechainEunice, LA
So sorry to hear of Michelle's passing. She was a sweetheart and a beautiful person. My condolences to her husband, Debbie and Rene. May the perpetual light shine upon her. ✝
Monica Ardoin StephensEunice, LA
Our dear Shelle, Nana, Aunt Michelle...a most cherished person in the lives of so many. You may have left this earth but you will never leave our hearts and minds. RIP sweet girl...here is to our glory days.
Yvonne and Frank ButcherLafayette, LA
She was a "Eunique" person from Eunice with her own elan vitale. She was a whirlwind who pulled you into a dizzying world of fashion, fun, excitement and life lived large. She will be missed more than most people.
Jeff LousteauLafayette, LA