In Memoriam: John Edward Chance

Lafayette, Louisiana — A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00 AM on Monday, May 5, 2008, at St. Mary Catholic Church in Lafayette for John Edward Chance who passed away peacefully on Thursday, May 1, 2008 at home in Lafayette at the age of 84. Interment will take place at Calvary Cemetery in Lafayette.

Mr. Chance was born in Hardin County, Texas on January 18, 1924. He graduated from Silsbee High School and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Texas. He was awarded the Purple Heart after being wounded at the Battle of the Bulge in the World War II European Campaign.

A resident of Lafayette since 1951, Mr. Chance began his career with Sun Oil Company, and then founded John E. Chance & Associates, Inc. in 1957 and Survey Boats, Inc. some years later. He enjoyed numerous professional successes and gained the respect and friendship of employees and colleagues as he led his company for 34 years.

Honors for his work included the US Senate Productivity Award for Innovation for the Starfix Positioning System, the University of Texas College of Engineering Distinguished Graduates Award, the Louisiana Society of CPA’s Free Enterprise Award, the Louisiana Engineering Society James M. Todd Technological Accomplishment Medal, the International Trade Development Group’s International Achievement Award, the Goodyear/NACP Conservation Award of Merit for accomplishments in Resource Conservation, the University of Texas at Austin Friend of ALEC Award and the Marine Technology Society’s Marine Compass Industrial Award. Mr. Chance was honored to be named LAGCOE Looey in 2005 and to the Times of Acadiana Hall of Fame for Business Achievement in 2000.

Mr. Chance served the Lafayette community on the Board of Directors of Lafayette General Hospital and the Acadiana Mental Health Treatment Center. He also served on the Louisiana State Advisory Council for Vocational and Technical Education. He was a Director on the Boards of the Lafayette Petroleum Club, American Bank and Trust Co. and The Bank of Lafayette. He was an active member of the American Congress of Surveying and Mapping, the Louisiana Engineering Society and the Louisiana Society of Professional Surveyors. He was a registered Professional Engineer in Civil Engineering in Louisiana and Alabama.

Mr. Chance was a member of the Lafayette Mardi Gras Association, the Krewe of Gabriel, the Krewe of Troubadours and the Mystic Krewe of Louisianans of Washington, DC. He reigned as King Gabriel XLVIII in 1987and King Lacassine XVII in 1985.

At the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Mr. Chance and his wife established the JECA Annual Scholarship for Civil Engineering, as well as the John E. & Joretta A. Chance Professorship Endowment in Engineering. In addition to UL-Lafayette, Mr. and Mrs. Chance have also been supporters of Louisiana State University, University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University.

Among Mr. Chance’s joys in life were his family, his friends and his career. In addition, he enjoyed many hobbies over the years including working his cattle ranch and farm lands, fishing, traveling with his wife and friends and researching his family history.

The family requests that visitation be observed on Sunday, May 4, 2008 from 2:00 PM to 8:00 PM at Martin & Castille Funeral Home in Lafayette.

In lieu of flowers, friends are asked to remember Hospice of Acadiana, 2600 Johnston Street, Suite 200, Lafayette, LA 70503, The Our Lady of Fatima Library Fund, 2315 Johnston Street, Lafayette, LA 70503 or Carmelite Monastery, 1250 Carmel Ave. Lafayette, LA 70501.

Personal condolences may be sent to the Chance family at

Martin & Castille Funeral Home of Lafayette has been chosen to help with the arrangements. 337-234-2311