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Strain Statement on Death of Venoy Kinnaird

June 8, 2020

Baton Rouge, La. (June 8, 2020) – “One cannot think about Venoy Kinnaird without seeing a big man with a huge smile. Venoy was a true leader in his family, his community, his state, and in agriculture.

“Venoy was not only one of the largest sweet potato farmers in Louisiana in which he farmed 300 acres in Morehouse Parish, but he was also a true advocate for agriculture. He served on the Sweet Potato Commission for years and was a member of the board of directors for the Louisiana Sweet Potato Association. I even got to travel internationally with Venoy as he was a huge advocate for agriculture. Nobody was more influential than he was when it came to agricultural issues and he made a major impact on agriculture policy.

“His pea cooking events were legendary. Every year we looked forward to a gathering in his sweet potato shed to feast on peas and all the fixings. There were also fresh tomatoes, onions and fresh brewed tea. Nothing stopped the festive gathering until we shorted out all of the electrical circuits because we had so many fans running in the Louisiana heat.

“Venoy graciously agreed to host a pea cooking gathering for Governor John Bel Edwards and me as we toured the state to discuss agricultural and rural issues with farmers. I will never forget the many wonderful memories I have of Venoy.

“Venoy was serious about agriculture and rural Louisiana. In every visit, there was a serious discussion of the issues of the day. He was a good friend, a true leader, and he will be dearly missed.”