Today is a day I will never forget. 14 years ago today on September 21st, my dad passed away at the age of 61. It is hard to believe that it has been 14 years since he left this world leaving a gap in my heart, a void in Cajun music, and sadness for the fans of his show.

James David Soileau better known as Dave Soileau was born in Ville Platte Louisiana on August 29, 1946, and was the son of Allen and Barbara Soileau of Grand Prairie, Louisiana.  He grew up in Ville Platte until he was in the 3rd grade. At that time, the family moved to Lake Charles for his dad's work.

Growing up, Dave was always immersed in the Cajun culture with his family and learning how to speak Cajun French at a young age. He was also a huge fan of Cajun and Louisiana music which became his passion.

Mike and his Dad Dave Soileau (Photo by Mike Soileau)

He served in the United States Army and Navy and also was a police officer with the City of Lake Charles and the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office for over 36 years. At the time of his death, he was a polygraph administrator for the CPSO.

Mike Soileau

On his weekends off Dave would do a Cajun music and Louisiana music show on the radio.  He started off on KAOK 1400am in the 1980s and also did a show on Q101 In Sulphur,  Then he moved over to Cajun Country 92.9 in Jennings before landing back on that radio on 99.5 before he and I started Cajun Radio in Lake Charles in 2005. His show was called 'Louisiana Bandstand' and was listened to by many every Saturday morning.

Dave Soileau on Cajun Radio (Photo by Mike Soileau)

It was the first non-subscription of all Cajun, Swamp pop, and Zydeco Louisana music radio stations in the world. That radio station is still in existence to this day at 1290 am and www.cajunradio.com.

Mike and His Dad 1988

Dave was inducted into the Lake Charles Chapter of the Cajun French Music Hall Of Fame and a month before he died, he was also inducted into the Louisiana Cajun Music Hall of Fame by then Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landreau.

Mike and His Dad In the Cajun Radio studio

Dave Soileau was also a tv reporter for KPLC TV as a senior reporter for the nightly news.  He was a busy man who loved giving back to the community.  He was the president of the Cajun French Music Association's Lake Charles Chapter and the president of the Fraternal Order of Police.

Mike Soileau with his Mom and dad in Germany 1977 (Mike Soileau)

My dad was a great guy and every person I meet who knew him always has nothing but great things to say about him.  I owe him all I know about Louisiana music and in 2018 all his hard work teaching me about the language, culture, and music paid off as I was inducted into the Cajun French Music Hall of Fame as a radio DJ.

Mike Soileau and Dad, Dave Soileau 1992 Live Broadcast

One of my favorite memories of time with dad was that he took the time not only to teach me about the music but the history behind each song,  He was a great mentor and father and I miss him dearly.

So on the anniversary of his passing, I just wanted to brag on the late great Dave Soileau, the man who made me who I am today.  Thank you, Dad. I love you.

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