The General’s Flight

Brig. Gen. Robert J. LeBlanc is a native of Abbeville, Louisiana. In 1943, he volunteered for duty with the Office of Strategic Services – a predecessor of our modern CIA – and served as a special operations liaison officer between General Patton’s Army and the French Underground. In 1945, he was transferred to the China-Burma Theater, where he served as a special operations officer with the OSS Detachment.

Gen. LeBlanc holds several distinguished awards from his time in service to our nation, but in 2016 he learned he had been selected to receive the Congressional Gold Medal – the highest civilian honor the United States can bestow. Organizers finally scheduled the ceremony for early 2018. This past March, Gen. LeBlanc, who happens to be the father of one of our very own LHC Group employees, Donna Thibodeaux, was at the Lafayette airport preparing to travel to Washington D.C. for the medal ceremony. However, his journey hit a few snags. Weather conditions caused his scheduled flight to Atlanta to be delayed. When it finally arrived, it was grounded and unable to depart due to technical issues.

Gen. LeBlanc was stranded at the airport with no way to get to Washington. Fortunately, Donna had an idea. She called Keith and told him about the family’s urgent need and the difficulties they were having in reaching Washington for this important ceremony. With a few more phone calls, and help from a number of generous people along the way, our LHC Group family was able to secure use of the company jet to take Gen. LeBlanc and his family to Washington, and return them to Lafayette after the ceremony.

To make a long story short, Gen. LeBlanc was at that ceremony, and received his Congressional Gold Medal.

You all know our tagline – It’s all about helping people. Well, we’ve found that living up to that statement often means being prepared and willing to help in some unexpected ways. Our LHC Group family was honored to have an opportunity to help one of our own – Donna, and her family – and blessed to have the resources available to do so.

It was a privilege to make this small gesture to such a distinguished member of our community, and someone who has lived the life of being a Servant Leader – to his family, friends, community, parish, vocations, and to his country. We congratulate Brig. Gen. LeBlanc on his meritorious honor and thank him for his service.