Louisiana is recognized for distinctive cuisine. It should be no shock then that a statute will be erected in memory of Al Copeland, the New Orleans entrepreneur who brought spicy Popeye’s Fried Chicken to the rest of the country. Copeland’s life is a rags-to-riches story from a humble beginning to great success and a flamboyant lifestyle. He was born in a public housing project. His father left shortly after he was born abandoning the family. He dropped out of high school at 16 and worked in a grocery store and then a doughnut shop. At the doughnut shop, he was exposed to the restaurant business and franchising; lessons he capitalized upon and built a fast-food empire. He was famous not only for his fried chicken but also his extravagance including such pursuits as power boat racing, lavish weddings, and his annual Christmas light show that brought thousands of visitors each year.
To see the article about the statue written by Doug MacCash of the Times-Picayune, click here. ARTICLE