Luddy Herpin has been in education in Vermilion Parish for the last 30 years.
Vermilion Parish School Board votes to pick Herpin's replacement not knowing he does not live in district
NOTE: Scroll down to the bottom of the Vermiliontoday.com home page and watch Luddy Herpin's son, Shay, fuss at the school board members before they voted for Luddy's replacement.
Former school board member Luddy Herpin got his wish for 12 hours by having his son, Scott, sit in his seat as the school member of District A. But after being sworn in on Monday night, Scott is going to have to step down because he does not live in District A.
That fact was discovered Tuesday morning after seeing were Scott lives.
A second special meeting will take place tonight to rename Luddy’s replacement. The meeting begins at 6 p.m.
After watching Monday night’s special meeting take place and seeing board members agree and disagree about who they want to replace Luddy, his wife Shirley Herpin told her children she wants to sit in her husband’s school board seat for the three month period. Then a special election will take place on March 24 to serve the remaining part of his term.
According to Luddy’s other son, Shay, his mother called him Tuesday morning to tell Shay she was not going to let Luddy’s wish be denied.
Shirley is no stranger to school board meetings. She has attended them with her husband for the last three years.
Luddy Herpin, a long-time educator in Vermilion Parish, passed away recently after a short battle with cancer.
While he was sick, he told his family if anything should happen to him, he would like his son, Scott, to take his place as the school board member.
Once he passed, the Herpin family mailed letters to each school board member explaining Luddy’s request.
On Monday, in a special meeting, the school board members voted 5-2 to name Scott Herpin as the temporary replacement. The entire Herpin family was in the audience at the meeting. No one bothered to check to see if Scott lived in the district before the vote was taken.
At the time, voting in favor of Luddy’s request were board members Laura LeBeouf, Sarah Duplechain, Kibbie Pillette, Chris Hebert and Stacy Landry. Voting against Luddy’s request were board members Anthony Fontana and Chris Gautreaux.
Before the vote, Fontana nominated Gueydan’s Scott Vallo to fill Luddy’s seat. Gautreaux second Fontana’s nomination.
LeBeouf made a substitute motion and named Scott Herpin. Duplechain second her motion.
Before the vote occurred, a 10 minute discussion took place as why it was not unanimous when honoring Luddy’s final request.
Shay, who is a teacher/coach at Kaplan High, was upset that not everyone was in favor of honoring Luddy’s final school board request.
Shay stood up and addressed the board members before the vote was taken.
“This is my father’s last request, who gave his life to this parish and these kids,” Shay said. “It is hard for me to understand how you, as a board, can not honor his last request. That is amazing. A man who gave so much to our parish. The man loved kids. You are going to sit here and have a debate for three months. You can not give my father happiness for three months? That is absorbed.”
LeBeouf asked School board attorney Woody Woodruff if there ever had been a time when the school board did not honor the family’s request of a dying school board member and name someone else?
Duplechain said, “I am so heart broken that this is even a discussion. Allow the Herpin family to continue their mourning process and do what is right.”
The Herpin family is expected to be at Wednesday's meeting to see if the school board votes to name Shirley as the new school board member.