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Patricia Lorraine Parker

June 28, 1953 ~ May 21, 2019 (age 65)
Patricia Lorraine Couturie Parker departed this life on May 21, 2019. Her stay was far too short. Tricia was a unique soul, a lover of animals, good food and music, nature and all that which is humane and decent. She was not afraid to voice her opinions. Ever. She had guts and tenacity. She was small in stature but mighty in spirit.

Tricia was born June 28, 1953 in New Orleans to Lorraine Mooney and Maurice Couturie as a 3rd generation New Orleanian. She attended St. Martin’s Episcopal School and the University of New Orleans. She spent her early professional life as a mortgage banker but found her true calling as a zookeeper in the Asian Domain at the Audubon Zoo. She worked there for 20 years, a time she considered the best of her life. There she cared for lions, tigers, bears (oh my), otters, elephants, leopards and her very favorite species - babirusa, a wild hog from Indonesia. She mentored many young zookeepers and interns over the years, made lifelong friends and cherished memories that she would recount at every opportunity. Along with her zoo animals, she also had various and sundry dogs, cats, birds, snakes, a guinea pig, and a much beloved rat.

Animals have always been a large part of Tricia’s life. Her mother, Lorraine was a cofounder of the Jefferson SPCA, and she grew up with critters of all kinds. Tricia rode horses in her youth and won several championships at regional and national horse shows on her American Saddlebred bay mare, Society Princess and her walk-trot pinto, Sweet Sioux. She had a room full of glass cases filled with silver trophies and ribbons proudly displayed in her childhood home.

Tricia will be dearly missed and forever remembered by her two daughters, Heather Parker Zimmerman (Keith), Elizabeth Parker Letterman (Chris), her grandsons, Anthony and Jack, her dog, Oblio, her cats, Elliot and Chloe, her dearest friend and soulmate, Joey and a wealth of family and friends. She touched many lives, hearts and souls. She left her mark on this world in her own unique and special way, and we are all the better for having known her.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend the Celebration of Life Services at Greenwood Funeral Home, 5200 Canal Blvd., New Orleans on Saturday, May 25, 2018 at 12noon. Visitation will begin at 10AM. Interment to follow in Greenwood Cemetery.
The family invites you to share your thoughts, fond memories, and condolences online, at

In lieu of flowers, please make donations in her name to the Louisiana SPCA, Villalobos Rescue Center, or the Humane Society of the United States.
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