Troyce Guice

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Troyce Eual Guice
Born (1932-11-01)November 1, 1932
St. Joseph, Tensas Parish, Louisiana, USA
Died March 29, 2008(2008-03-29) (aged 75)
Natchez, Adams County, Mississippi, USA
Resting place
Natchez City Cemetery in Natchez, Mississippi
Alma mater

Joseph Moore Davidson High School

University of Southern Mississippi
Occupation Businessman and farmer
Political party
Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, 1966 and 1996
Religion Baptist
Spouse(s) Lynda McLaurin Guice
Children

Daughters
Carroll Smith of Germantown, Tennessee
Kimberly Morrow of Opelousas
Anne McDaniel of Natchez

Son Wes W. Guice of Natchez
Notes
(1) Guice's business interests included farms in five American states.

(2) Though he ran for office three times as a Democrat in Louisiana, Guice became a Republican contributor in his later years in Natchez, Mississippi.

(3) Guice was a former member of the Louisiana Levee Board.

Troyce Eual Guice (November 1, 1932 – March 29, 2008) was a prominent businessman in northeastern Louisiana who twice ran for the United States Senate in campaigns thirty years apart, 1966 and 1996. A conservative Democrat, Guice later, as a Mississippi voter, became a donor to the Republican Party.[1] He was involved in three major business ventures -- automobile sales, restaurants, and his Guice Farms, which he purchased in 1961 and expanded operations into five states.[2]

Background[edit]

Guice was born in St. Joseph, the seat of Tensas Parish, to Ivy Eual Guice (1910–1994) and the former Tressie Westbrook (1911–1999), later of Vidalia, the seat of Concordia Parish [3] Tensas Parish, the smallest of Louisiana's sixty-four parishes, is located near the Mississippi River north of Natchez, Mississippi, where Guice spent his later years. Guice graduated from the then segregated Joseph Moore Davidson High School, since predominantly African American. Davidson was renamed in 2006 as Tensas High School and is the only public high school for Tensas Parish. He attended the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg. He served in the United States National Guard.[4]

In 1954, Guice opened his Buick dealership in Ferriday in Concordia Parish, located across the Mississippi River from Natchez. He relocated to Wisner in 1958 with his Guice Chevrolet but moved the dealership to Ferriday in 1959. He then launched his farming operation. Three decades later, he opened another Chevrolet dealership in Winnsboro, the seat of Franklin Parish, also in northeast Louisiana.

Thereafter, Guice went into the restaurant business, with his T. G. Ribs and The Natchez Landing in both Natchez and Baton Rouge.[4] He also operated a bed and breakfast in Natchez.

The Natchez restaurant closed after a casino opened nearby, and the business became noncompetitive. "The bottom line is that money they're spending at the casino is money they're not spending at other businesses," Guice said in an interview with Casino City Times on March 17, 2003.[5] Guice also traded stock on the Internet. In an interview with the Natchez Democrat newspaper, he described his investment strategy after September 11, 2001, as one of "watching and waiting" though he remained optimistic about long-term investor prospects.[6]

He was a former member of the Louisiana Cattleman's Association, the Louisiana Levee Board, and the Mississippi River Bridge Commission. He was affiliated with the First Baptist Church of Natchez.[4]

Political activities[edit]

In 1966, Guice challenged entrenched U.S. Senator Allen J. Ellender of Houma, the seat of Terrebonne Parish in south Louisiana. A liberal candidate who supported the civil rights agenda also entered the race, then State Senator J.D. DeBlieux, a Caldwell Parish native who represented a Baton Rouge-area district. Ellender swept to his sixth and, as it turned out, last term. Guice, unable to make himself known statewide, finished last in the race with some 74,000 votes (11 percent).[7]

In 1975, Guice entered the first-ever jungle primary in Louisiana for the Dixtrict 21 seat in the Louisiana House of Representatives. He sought to succeed Representative (and former state senator) J.C. "Sonny" Gilbert of Catahoula Parish. However, Guice, despite backing from the Concordia Parish sheriff, did not make the second round of balloting, called the general election in Louisiana. Instead, Dan Richey, then of Ferriday, a former neighbor of Guice's, defeated former state Representative David I. Patten for the seat.[8]

Guice surfaced again in 1996, when Democratic U.S. Senator J. Bennett Johnston, Jr., Ellender's long-term successor, first elected in 1972, retired after four terms. Guice was a minor candidate in the race, having finished with 15,277 votes (1.24 percent).[9] At some point thereafter, Guice began donating to Republican candidates.

Death[edit]

Guice died in a Natchez hospital after a lengthy illness. Survivors included his wife, the former Lynda McLaurin of Natchez; three daughters, Carroll Smith of Germantown, Tennessee; Kimberly Morrow of Opelousas, the seat of St. Landry Parish; and Anne McDaniel and husband Patrick McDaniel of Natchez; a son, Westbrook Guice of Natchez; seven grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; three sisters, Faye Gordin of Crystal Springs, Mississippi; Elaine Andrews and husband Shug Andrews of Longview, Texas, and Linda Rachal and husband Dave Rachal of Patterson in St. Mary Parish in south Louisiana.[4]

Services were held in Natchez on April 1, 2008. Interment was at Natchez City Cemetery.[4]

References[edit]