Jeff’s Life & Legacy
“If you love everything, you will perceive the divine mystery in things. Once you perceive it, you will begin to comprehend it better every day. And you will come at last to love the whole world with an all-embracing love.”
—The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Jeff Nola was born in 1975 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to parents Mike and Mary Nola. Like his older brother Paul, he attended St. Thomas More Catholic School and Catholic High School. Jeff showed an interest and affinity for music from an early age, and began playing the drums in grade school. He played in the jazz, symphonic, and marching bands at CHS, was captain of the drumline, and won the band’s highest award, The Golden Bear, during his senior year. Jeff demonstrated a fervent desire to help others less fortunate than himself while at CHS, and to set a spiritual and moral example to all people he encountered. He was an enthusiastic member of the Catholic Church, participated in several student organizations including Student Ministry and Amnesty International, and was named a CHS ‘Man of the Year’ when he graduated in 1994.
Jeff attended Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, and received a degree in English Literature in 1998. He continued his spiritual development by minoring in Religious Studies, and his musical development as a 4-year member of LSU marching band. He returned to Catholic High as a Religion and English teacher after graduating from LSU.
Jeff continued to enthusiastically pursue his spiritual growth during his 12 years teaching at CHS. He earned a Master’s degree in Pastoral Studies from Loyola University-New Orleans, and continued to put others ahead of himself by serving as Campus Minister and band moderator in addition to fulfilling his teaching duties.
Jeff’s strong faith in God, his genuine love for all people, and his heartwarming smile touched many lives. He loved to serve through giving to the less fortunate. For years he coordinated and led students to mission trips to New Orleans, Kentucky, and Mexico. His favorite trip every year was to St. Anne’s Mission in Klagetoh, Arizona, where the Brothers of the Sacred Heart (who run Catholic High School) have a mission working on a Navajo Indian Reservation. Jeff reached out to many in his role of ministering. He had many loyal and true friends and their friendship and love were important to him.
In 2010, Jeff married the love of his life, Laura Landry, and happily settled into their life together. He died peacefully Sunday, May 29, 2011, on their 1st wedding anniversary.