George M. Olivier III, 78, passed away peacefully on Monday, October 30, 2017 surrounded by his family. Born to George M. Olivier Jr. and Shirley Marie Chalon Olivier he lived most of his life in Natchitoches.
He is survived by his daughter Chalon Marie and husband RobAhbol of Shreveport, children Robert, Tiffany Price, Alix, and Olivia and sons George M. Olivier IV of Lafayette, Andre G. Olivier and wife Kristina of Ambler, PA, and children Nolan and Nathan. Siblings Anita Olivier of Tallahassee, Rene Olivier and wife Georgia of Dallas, Bonnie Wereda and husband Rich of San Ramon, CA.
George made a distinct mark on Natchitoches beginning in 1960 when he came to Northwestern State University. In 1965, he started Olivier’s Fine Cypress Furniture at 117 Second Street, where he stayed. George is considered by all a Master Craftsman producing thousands of pieces of furniture, oval bowls, and other special custom pieces over five decades.
George was humble and soft spoken. He absolutely loved giving tours of his shop, where he showed off his specialized toolingand countless jigs that he designed and built.
Mayor Lee Posey recently said that “George certainly marched to a different drummer” and all those who knew him would easily agree. For years George would walk down Front Street to Kaffie Fredericks and continue down Second Street back to the shop. Of course, stopping and talking with many friends alonghis route.
You name it, he built it; cabinets, doors, beds, desks, hutches, tables, dressers, chairs, chests, fern stands, and bowls. Each piece made was truly a work of art. He preferred to incorporate knots prominently in his pieces.
George loved cypress. He rarely used anything else except for his oval bowls. He always enjoyed when people would bring him bowl blanks, often he would stack them in his yard to “weather”. He sought out unique wood riddled with knots, rot and insect damage.
The Olivier family would like to thank Mayor Lee Posey and the City of Natchitoches, all our customers, vendors, and friends. We would also like to thank everyone who worked for George,each one held a special spot in his heart.
The city of Natchitoches has truly lost one of its shining stars.
A memorial celebration will be held at the Natchitoches Art Center located at 716 Second Street. Please feel free to stop by anytime between 3-6 PM Sunday, November 5, 2017.