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Edley Milton Hixson Jr. Obituary

Apr 18, 2023, 11:39 AM by Courtesy of Hixson Family
Edley Milton Hixson Jr. passed away on Sunday, April 16, 2023.

Edley Milton Hixson Jr.

Obituary of Edley Milton Hixson Jr.

On, Sunday, April 16, 2023, Edley Milton Hixson, Jr. passed away peacefully surrounded by his family in Lake Charles, Louisiana, he was 83 years old. His passing was due to complications from his battle with cancer.

He was born in Lake Charles, La. on October 26, 1939 and was the only child of Edley M. Hixson, Sr. and Elizabeth Long Hixson. He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Susan Abell Hixson of DeRidder, La. and his four children, Dallas Long Hixson and Cindy of Alexandria, La. Clinton Edley Hixson of DeRidder, La. Catherine Hixson Clary and Mike of DeRidder, La. and Lee Abell Hixson and Sarah of Brenham, Tx. His favorite title was “Shot” (short for Big Shot) given to him by his seven beloved grandchildren; Elizabeth Hixson and Dallas Hixson, Jr. of Alexandria, Anna Clary and Sadie Clary of DeRidder, Ara Hixson and Josie Hixson of DeRidder, and Matteo Ieena, of Brenham, Tx.

He attended Lake Charles High School. He furthered his education by attending Louisiana State University, McNeese State University, New York University Graduate School, and finished with Loyola Law School in New Orleans in 1964. Edley became a member of the Louisiana and Texas bar.

Following law school, he worked in the land and asset department of Southland Life Insurance company in Dallas, Texas. While in Dallas, he met his wife, Sue, of 57 years through a friend. Sue had been skydiving and Edley had to meet a woman that would jump out of a perfectly good airplane!

Edley and Sue were married in New Orleans on July 17, 1965. They returned to live in Lake Charles where he started work for Magnolia Life Insurance Co & Hixson Funeral Homes. Eventually Edley became President of Magnolia Life Insurance Co. in the early 1980’s. The company spread from Louisiana to East Texas and eventually to many other areas. As a part of that expansion, Edley invested in a car dealership, purchasing the Ford dealership in Monroe, La. 

While living in Lake Charles, Edley was heavily involved in the local community and in various organizations. He was a member of the chamber of commerce and the YMCA. He was a board member and president of the Lake Charles Country Club and loved golf during his younger years. 

The family moved south of DeRidder into the country in 1983. Ranch life fit the entire family where they all learned to work hard, love animals, and benefit from being a close knit family. The ranch is still fully operational today!

In the early 1990’s, Magnolia Life Insurance Co. sold, but Edley remained in the car business. In 2007 he was honored by Time Magazine as one of their Time Quality Car Dealers of the Year. He enjoyed being in business with his sons, where Edley remained the Chairman of the Board until his passing. He cherished the opportunity to be in business to help and develop the people who worked with him. The type of business did not matter as long as he could work with family. His servant leadership as a business owner is demonstrated in the tremendous friendships and admiration shown by all of those who worked with him.

Ranch life was an escape for Edley over the years. He was a major influence for the National Cutting Horse Association. He won many awards over the decades of his involvement. He started his cutting horse career in 1971. His legal and business background were immensely helpful in shaping the future of the organization and the cutting horse industry we enjoy today. He served as President of the NCHA and was on the executive committee for over 20 years. He was inducted into the National Cutting Horse Association Hall of Fame in 2008, to date it was one of his proudest accomplishments. 

The flip side of horses was offshore fishing. He had decades of sea experience and received his US Coast Guard Captains License in his early 60’s. Edley loved to go from the ranch to the Gulf of Mexico to fish, especially with his family and close friends They all learned to love the water and traveled all over by boat when possible. Edley created so many memories with his family fishing the gulf coast and beyond.

The true highlight of his life was his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Edley was saved in 1948 and tried to live a life filled with the love of Jesus Christ! He was ordained as a deacon at Trinity Baptist Church in Lake Charles until moving to DeRidder where he became a deacon at First Baptist Church until his passing. In the Magnolia Life Insurance Company and in the car business he started a chaplain program ministering to the employees. This program still exists and is going strong today. He never passed up a moment to share his faith and encourage others in their faith!

Edley influenced many people over his 83 years of life! He will be remembered by all those he impacted, along with his family and friends. As he was welcomed into Heaven, there is no doubt he heard the words we all yearn to hear by our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ: “well done my good and faithful servant” - you are home!

As a final note, we cannot thank the doctors, the nurses, and the staff of Lake Charles Memorial Hospital enough for their personal care, attention, and help through Edley’s illness. They tirelessly worked to assist him in his battle. Additionally, we would like to thank the Guardian of Lake Charles, Home Instead, and Harbor Hospice in keeping him comfortable and caring for his needs and for their encouragement in his final days. The generosity and compassion they all showed is forever appreciated.

Pastor Brad Webb, Pastor George Lee Glass, and Pastor Joe Howard Williamson will officiate the service. The Pallbearers are Tom Rhodes, Tommy Elkins, Bruce Richerson, Brian Shirley, Bobby Dale Kelly, and Dallas Hixson, Jr. 

Visitation will take place at the First Baptist Church in DeRidder on Friday, April 21, 2023 beginning at 12pm with a Memorial Service to begin at 2pm. Burial will follow at Beauregard Cemetery. 

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating in honor of Edley Hixson, Jr. to Dry Creek Baptist Camp in Dry Creek, La.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Hixson family.

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