05/09/2012 12:41PM

Louisiana Downs: Perrodin gets lifetime achievment award

Hodges Photography
E.J. Perrodin, who was found to have lung cancer earlier this year, is surrounded by family and friends last Friday in the Louisiana Downs winner's circle.

BOSSIER CITY, La. – Last Friday, an hour before the first race of the Louisiana Downs season, E. J. Perrodin was presented with a lifetime achievement award by Louisiana Downs management. A large group of friends, family, horsemen, officials as well as current and former members of the local jockey colony surrounded Perrodin in the winner’s circle he had visited countless times as a rider.

Perrodin, who was found to have inoperable lung cancer soon after announcing his retirement earlier this year, appeared frail but in good spirits as he was escorted by his wife Lisa, trainer Pat Mouton and visiting rider and close friend Bobby Walker Jr.

Mouton is married to Lisa’s sister Pam, and the tightly knit four-member family unit has been a big part of racing at Louisiana Downs for the last 30 years. Walker’s daughter Brittany, 20, was also in attendance and is the goddaughter of the Perrodins.

“It means more than you know,” a tearful Pam Mouton said of the ceremony. “It has been a very difficult time for us, very difficult. But the love out there today says so much about this racing community.”

A winner of over 3,000 races, Perrodin, 55, is under hospice care at his home in nearby Haughton, La. He and Lisa have a 7-year-old son, Devin.