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Francis “Lou” Gros Louis

Francis “Lou” Gros Louis, a resident of Blue Ridge at Lansdowne Woods (formerly Leisure World) in Leesburg, Virginia, passed away on Wednesday, January 31, 2018, after a brief illness. Moving to Lansdowne Woods in 2001, he served two terms on the Blue Ridge Board of Directors and volunteered with the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors. He retired in 2005 from HUD after serving for 35 years in multiple key positions, including Special Assistant to HUD Secretary Andrew Cuomo, National Director of Disaster Recovery on the 557 federally recognized Indian Reservations, and Director of Loan Management and Property Disposition for Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

Prior to joining the Department of Housing and Urban Development, he spent 15 years as the Deputy Superintendent of the Abbott Textile Mills in Wilton, New Hampshire. Additionally, he was on the Board of Selectmen, a member of the Governor’s Crime Commission Task Force and the Governor’s Resources and Development Committee, and was named an Interim State Senator for New Hampshire. He also served his Community as a Captain on Wilton’s Volunteer Fire Department and as a Deputy Forest Fire Warden for New Hampshire.

He received numerous awards for his volunteer efforts, patriotic speeches and published articles. He won two National Freedoms Foundation Awards for patriotic speeches, the Points of Life Award for originating “Operation Clothesline” that brought clothing donations to the people of the Oglala Sioux Indian Nation in South Dakota, and his family was named the New Hampshire All-American Family in 1970.

He was educated at The Tilton School and Boston College. In both 1972 and 2008 he received the prestigious George L. Plimpton Award, given to a Tilton School alumnus who made outstanding contributions to society. He served (4) years with the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War working in the Intelligence Division of SAC Headquarters in the Office of General Curtis Lemay in Omaha, Nebraska. He was a proud enrolled member of the Huron-Wendat Indian Nation.

He was born in Woonsocket, Rhode Island on October 6, 1930, son of Albert and Jeanette Gros Louis. He is pre-deceased by wife Shirley (Olson) Gros Louis, originally of Omaha, Nebraska, and brother, Dr. Kenneth Gros Louis of Bloomington, Indiana. Survivors include his daughter Cheryl (Veny) Galvez of Great Falls, Virginia; daughter Melissa (Doug) Staley of Martinsburg, West Virginia; son Brian (Diane) Gros Louis of Boerne, Texas; and brothers- and sister-in-law, Marvin and Robert Olson and Patricia Arndt, all of Omaha, Nebraska. He is also survived by 11 grandchildren 1 great-grandchild: Victoria Galvez of Washington, DC, Victor Galvez of San Francisco, California; Benjamin Wimberly and son Wyatt, Michelle Hickerson, and Matthew and Samantha Staley of Martinsburg, West Virginia; John Gros Louis of Austin, Texas, and Keri and Kelianne Gros Louis and Karly (Nick) Champion of Boerne, Texas.

A service to be held later will coincide with his interment at Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, please send a donation in his memory to either: St. Labre Indian School at http://www.stlabre.org or IAFF Burn Foundation at http://www.foundation.iaff.org.

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