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New Orleans LaToya Cantrell Jason attorney husband death funeral mayor

Source: Courtesy of / @CityOfNOLA Instagram

Attorney Jason Cantrell, the first gentleman of New Orleans, has passed away. 

Mayor LaToya Cantrell’s office announced the death of her late husband Aug. 14 via a press release. The statement didn’t disclose any information about the 55-year-old attorney’s cause of death or its circumstances. Jason’s father, former Orleans Parish Magistrate Judge Harry Cantrell, shared Aug. 15 that the late public servant died following a heart attack.

“It is with great sadness and heartache that we announce the passing of First Gentleman Jason Cantrell,” Director of Communications Gregory Joseph wrote on the city’s media page.

“He was a devoted husband and father, as well as a dedicated public servant who valiantly served the residents of this city not only alongside Mayor Cantrell but also as an experienced family, civil and criminal attorney. First Gentleman Cantrell will forever be missed and cherished by his beloved family, the legal community and the entire City of New Orleans. May he rest in God’s eternal peace.

Our love and prayers remain with Mayor Cantrell, their daughter RayAnn and the entire Cantrell family. We ask that you please respect their privacy during this challenging time.”

Jason was a passionate and lifelong New Orleanian. He and Mayor Cantrell tied the knot in 1999. The latter was appointed the city’s first female mayor almost 20 years later, in 2018.

The attorney’s homegoing is organized by D.W. Rhodes Funeral Home. His remembrance includes viewing his body from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. and a “celebration of life program” at Gallier Hall Aug. 21. Religious services at Blessed Trinity Catholic Church will begin Aug. 22 at 10 a.m.

Mayor Cantrell’s husband has been warmly remembered by those who’ve worked closely with the couple throughout their civic service.

Former New Orleans Parish Public Defender’s Office Chief, Derwyn Bunton, told that Cantrell went on a health-related leave of absence over a year ago. The late civil servant was formerly a contract attorney for the city government office, noted the source.

“We just didn’t see him for a bit, and then he reemerged. He talked about how he was ready to get back to work in the courts,” Derwyn recalled.

The Director of Communications at the mayor’s office, Gregory Joseph, wrote fondly of Jason in the city’s press release.

The attorney is survived by Mayor Cantrell, their daughter, RayAnn, and his other loved ones.

RayAnn posted throwback photos of her father Aug. 15 with the caption “1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 💔🕊️.” A portion of the Bible passage reads, “For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him… Therefore encourage one another with these words.”


See tributes and condolences from New Orleans leaders regarding the attorney’s death below. RIP.

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