Paul L. Foshee

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Paul Lee Foshee, Sr.
Louisiana State Senator from principally Natchitoches Parish
In office
Preceded by Sylvan N. Friedman
Succeeded by Donald G. Kelly
Louisiana State Representative from Natchitoches Parish (two members)
In office
Preceded by

E. H. Haynes

Monnie T. Cheves
Succeeded by Ray Tarver (single member)
Personal details
Born (1932-11-12)November 12, 1932
Natchitoches Parish
Louisiana, USA
Political party Democratic

(1) Charlene Addington Foshee (divorced)
(2) Venita Ann Higgs Foshee (divorced, deceased)
(3) Martha Martinez Foshee (divorced)
(4) Joyce Wall Foshee (divorced)
(5) Karen Cook Foshee (divorced)

(6) Katherine Joan Phares Foshee (divorced)

Paul Lee Foshee, Jr.
Fran Lea Foshee Poole
George Barnes Foshee (deceased)
Lane Chase Foshee (deceased)

Seven grandchildren
Occupation Businessman

Paul Lee Foshee, Sr. (born November 12, 1932), is a retired crop duster from Natchitoches, Louisiana, who served as a Democrat nonconsecutively in both houses of the Louisiana State Legislature during the 1960s and 1970s.


Foshee is descended from an old-line Natchitoches family, which first came to the Cane River area in 1690 from Paris, France.[1] His parents, who married in 1928, were George Washington Foshee (1893–1973),[2] a veteran of World War I and a sawmill operator in Natchitoches, and the former Mamie Lee Smith (1906–1991).[2] Foshee was reared in the Baptist Church. In 1950, he graduated from Natchitoches High School (renamed Natchitoches Central High School after desegregation), and in 1961, he completed studies for a bachelor's degree in social science at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches.[1]

Foshee has been married and divorced six times. From his first marriage to the former Charlene Addington, the daughter of Charles Garland Addington and the former Wanda Vera Smiddy (1916–1975), he had four children.[3] Paul Foshee, Jr. (born 1951), operates Foshee Dusting Company in Natchitoches, the business that Foshee founded in 1952. Foshee, Sr., retired from flying in 1998.[4]

From the first marriage, Foshee also has a daughter, Fran Lea Foshee Poole, and the late son, George Foshee.[3] A fourth child from the first marriage, Christie Cheryl Foshee, died at birth; no dates are marked on her gravestone in Fern Park Cemetery in Natchitoches.[5] From the second marriage to the former Venita Ann Higgs, since deceased, Foshee had a third son, Lane Chase Foshee (1970–1999). He has no children from his subsequent marriages to the former Martha Martinez, Joyce Wall, Karen Cook,[1] and Katherine Joan Phares.[3]

Foshee holds Patent 5033695, July 23, 1991, on the Aileron counterbalance mount bracket used on the Brumann crop dusting plane. The device operates similarly to power steering in automobiles. The patent expired in 2010.[6]

Political life[edit]

From 1960 to 1964, beginning at the age of twenty-seven, Foshee served a single four-year term as a state representative from Natchitoches Parish. He and former Representative Curtis Boozman[2] were elected in a two-member district in which the incumbents, Monnie T. Cheves and E. H. Hayes, were unseated in the 1959-1960 election cycle. Hayes was a former agriculture teacher at Natchitoches High School;[7] Cheves, a professor at Northwestern State University.[8]

Eight years later, Foshee was elected to a single term in the Louisiana State Senate. He unseated 20-year Democratic Senator Sylvan N. Friedman, a pro-Long farmer, cattleman, and large landowner from Natchez in south Natchitoches Parish (not to be confused with Natchez, Mississippi). After securing the pivotal Democratic nomination, Foshee then handily defeated in the general election held on February 1, 1972, the Republican Bob Reese,[2] a businessman who later became chairman of the Natchitoches Parish Board of Election Supervisors and served on the Republican State Central Committee from 1968 to 1996.[9] Reese had earlier run for the Louisiana House from Jackson Parish, having been defeated by future Speaker E.L. "Bubba" Henry.[10]

In the first ever nonpartisan blanket primary in 1975, Foshee was unseated by his fellow Democrat, Donald G. Kelly, a Natchitoches attorney originally from Coushatta, the seat of Red River Parish.[11] In 1979, Foshee’s 23-year-old son, George Barnes "Barney" Foshee (1956–2000),[2] failed in an attempt to unseat Kelly, who scored the second of his five terms in the state Senate. In 1987, Foshee himself unsuccessfully challenged Kelly, 25,619 votes (62.5 percent) to 15,346 (37.5 percent)[12]

Though a registered Democrat, Foshee considers himself to have been an Independent "good government" type of legislator, concerned in particular about bills relating to insurance, reducing taxes, and removing from the state payroll so-called "deadheads" or phantom employees who perform little or no actual work for their government checks. Though outgoing Governor Earl Kemp Long supported Foshee's initial election to the House, Foshee considered himself neither "pro-Long" nor "anti-Long" within his state's then dominant Democratic Party.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Statement of Paul Foshee, Sr., Natchitoches, Louisiana, September 24, 2009
  2. ^ a b c d e "Social Security Death Index". Retrieved September 29, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c "Paul Foshee". Retrieved September 23, 2009. 
  4. ^ "National Agricultural Aviation Association listing". agaviationlorg. Archived from the original on August 20, 2008. Retrieved September 23, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Fern Park Cemetery, Natchitoches, Louisiana". Retrieved September 23, 2009. 
  6. ^ "US Patent 5033695 - Aileron counterbalance mount bracket". Retrieved September 29, 2009. 
  7. ^ "Membership in the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2012" (PDF). Retrieved September 23, 2009. 
  8. ^ "In Memoriam: Monnie T. Cheves". Alexandria Daily Town Talk. August 17, 1988. p. D3. Retrieved September 9, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Louisiana Parish Election Officials LIst" (PDF). Retrieved September 26, 2009. 
  10. ^ Louisiana Secretary of State, Election Returns, February 6, 1968
  11. ^ "Membership in the Louisiana State Senate, 1812-2008" (PDF). Retrieved September 23, 2009. 
  12. ^ "Election returns, October 24, 1987". Louisiana Secretary of State. Retrieved September 9, 2014. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Sylvan N. Friedman
Louisiana State Senator from District 31 (Natchitoches, Grant, Winn, Red River, and part of Rapides parishes)

Paul Lee Foshee, Sr.

Succeeded by
Donald G. Kelly
Political offices
Preceded by
E. H. Hayes
Monnie T. Cheves
Two-member district
Louisiana State Representative from Natchitoches Parish (2-member district)

Paul Lee Foshee, Sr.
Served alongside:
Curtis Boozman

Succeeded by
Ray Tarver (single-member district)