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Laura Gatz Deavers, who served as editor of The Catholic Commentator for 30 years and was known for her commitment to her Catholic as well as to the people of the Diocese of Baton Rouge, died Wednesday, Sept. 13 at the age of 69.Deavers, a native of Baton Rouge, served as editor of the Commentator from 1984-2013 and helped transform the content of the paper into focusing more on the life and the people of the diocese.

“Laura Deavers applied her Catholic faith to everything she did,” Bishop Robert W. Muench said. “She was a superb editor of The Catholic Commentator and a highly qualified journalist and photographer who showed her love for the people of the Diocese of Baton Rouge by telling their stories so that all who read the paper might find deeper meaning in their lives. She was a model for all who aspire to excellence in life and in their chosen vocations. She was dearly loved and will be dearly missed.”

Deavers was a graduate of St. Joseph’s Academy and earned a degree in journalism from LSU, where she was a member of the Kappa Delta sorority. While serving at The Catholic Commentator, Deavers continued to expand her educational and religious horizons by enrolling in classes focused on the Bible, canon law and church philosophy.
Deavers’ early career as editor of several publications took her to many cities including Atlanta, New York and Dallas, where she met her future husband.
She and Bob were married in 1977 and returned to Baton Rouge to make their home. Following her 30 years as editor of the Catholic Commentator, Deavers retired and continued to enjoy her involvement and service in many civic and cultural organizations, her travels and her loyal support of LSU sports.
Deavers was instrumental in assisting the Clarion Herald, the newspaper for the Archdiocese of New Orleans, and the Southwest Catholic paper from the Diocese of Lake Charles, to resume publication in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. For several months, paved the way for both staffs to establish temporary offices in the Catholic Life Center and even houses staff members.
She is survived by her daughter Ann-Margaret Deavers and partners Lee and Buz Norwood of Baltimore, Maryland, her sister Charlene Reis and husband John of Bethel, Connecticut, her brother Les Gatz and wife Jean of Baton Rouge, and numerous nieces and nephews, along with many wonderful friends. Laura is preceded in death by her husband Robert (Bob) Deavers and her parents Margaret and Charles Gatz.  
Visitation is scheduled at Rabenhorst Funeral Home, 825 Government Street, Sept. 15 from 5 to 8 p.m. with recitation of the rosary at 7 p.m. Visitation to continue on Sept. 16 at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church in Baton Rouge at noon, followed by a Mass of Christian burial at 2 p.m. celebrated by Archbishop Alfred C. Hughes, retired archbishop of the Archdiocese of New Orleans who served as bishop in the Diocese of Baton Rouge from 1993-2001.
Interment to follow at Roselawn Memorial Park, 4045 North St.  In lieu of flowers the family is requesting memorial donations be made to St. Joseph’s Academy, 3015 Broussard Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70806, The Hospice of Baton Rouge, 3600 Florida Boulevard, Baton Rouge, LA 70806 or a charity of your choice.​