“I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.” - Maya Angelou. Few quotations could better describe Darlene “Tutsy” Ann Mallett as her family announces her passing at age 58 on Monday, August 2, 2021, at Christus Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital in Lake Charles, LA. Her raucous sense of humor and robust attitude will be sorely missed.
Tutsy, a nickname inspired from a great-aunt’s name and what Darlene was known as almost her entire life, was a Westlake, LA, resident. Born April 19, 1963, at Jennings American Legion Hospital in Jennings, LA, the world was gifted a resilient—albeit headstrong—woman. Most memorably as a very young child, Tutsy tested her mother’s mettle by sipping from an open bottle of what she thought was Coke at a gas station. (Long story short: it was not Coke, it was gasoline! No worse for wear, Tutsy and her family eventually learned to laugh about this story.)
Claiming Welsh, LA, as her hometown, Tutsy left Welsh High School in the 10th grade. Though not a high school graduate, she was a clever woman who faced challenges head on in life thanks to “real world” education and lessons. She was a disabled woman who had previously enjoyed a career in the service and hospitality industries, primarily in the restaurant setting and in housekeeping. In her heyday, Tutsy enjoyed dancing, exercising, drawing, and yard work—anything that kept her active and creative. In her later years, Tutsy mostly enjoyed calmer activities, including Facebook, listening to music, watching classic TV shows and movies, and visiting with family and friends. A brutally honest woman by anyone’s account, Tutsy would have told you her greatest achievement in life was her two sons.
Tutsy is survived by her: father, Henry Mallett, Sr.; partner, Floyd Trahan, Sr.; sons, Christopher “Chris” Mallett (Bobby Hill, Jr.), and Nicholas “Nick” Mallett (Natasha); grandson, Dilynn Mallett; sister Charlene Brady, née Mallett; brother Henry Mallett, Jr. (Kristina); sister Kim Nevils, née Mallett (James); brother Troy Mallett (Suzette); and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles, other family, and friends. She was preceded in death by her: mother, Wanda Mallett, née Sonnier; sister, Charlotte Cupper, née Mallett; brother-in-law, Michael Brady, Sr.; and nephew, Michael Brady, Jr.
On behalf of Tutsy, sincere gratitude and thanks go to the following individuals: her closest friends and family throughout life; educators and classmates who treated her kindly in school; staff at Christus Ochsner St. Patrick Hospital emergency department (especially nurse LaTeshia); and Stevens’ Funeral Home.
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