‘Lady of the Gulf’ will be Louisiana’s first memorial for people lost at sea

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PORT FOURCHON, La. — “What do you mean he did not surface? I can’t breathe … I can’t breathe.” 

It’s a phone call for which no parent is prepared, but years after Cindie Roussel lost her son, Blake Terry, in a diving accident in the Gulf of Mexico, she’s carrying on his legacy in a big way.

Roussel has joined together with others who have lost loved ones in the Gulf of Mexico — particularly, the families of the Deepwater Horizon explosion victims — to erect a monument honoring those who have died.

The statue, called Lady of the Gulf, resembles a mermaid and towers at more than 10 feet, but when it’s placed on its pedestal in Port Fourchon it will be over 16 feet tall.

“Although Louisiana is known to be the seafood capitol of the world and has the largest oil and gas industries, there is not a seaman’s memorial monument in our state. Lady of the Gulf represents our beauty and culture. She will be a place where family and friends will be able to go and honor their loved ones.”


It will be the first memorial for seamen in Louisiana. There’s currently one in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, and one in Madeira Beach, Florida.

Robert Epstein, the same artist who crafted the statue in Florida, is creating the masterpiece for Port Fourchon.

This project is planned to be completed by the fall 2017. The land has been donated by the Fourchon Port Commission, and she will be placed adjacent to the Emergency Command Center.

For more information on the monument and how you can help, click here.