Friends recall life of former Gonzales mayor

Former Gonzales Mayor Nelson Paul “Ninnie” Roth Sr. was buried Wednesday.

Roth, who served as mayor from 1973 to 1984, died Saturday at 89.

He was a U.S. Army veteran, real estate agent, founding partner and co-owner of the Gonzales Holiday Inn and a founding board member of United Community Bank.

Martin McConnell, American Gateway Bank area manager, called Roth his dear friend and mentor.

“Ninnie was vital to the success of the Chamber of Commerce in the early days, and it’s really thanks to Ninnie that we have Tanger Mall,” McConnell said.

Roth was a board member of the Gonzales Rotary Club, Audubon Girls Scouts, Ascension Parish Development Family, the Greater Gonzales Chamber of Commerce and the Ascension Vocational-Technical Institute.

Nelson was also a member of the American Legion Post 81 and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Nelson is survived by his wife of 61 years, Ruby Hebert Roth; daughter and son-in-law, Darla Roth Rye and Jamie; sons and daughters-in-law, Nelson “Snoop” Roth Jr. and Frances, Ricky Roth and Laurie; a sister, Rosalie Jones; grandchildren, Brooke Gautreau, Morgan Thibodeaux, Nelson “Trey” Roth III, Zackary Roth, Olivia Roth, Emily Rye, Hunter Roth; and great grandchildren, Parker Gautreau, Conner Gautreau, Cohen Thibodeaux, Nate Thibodeaux.