Belle Chasse, Louisiana

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Belle Chasse is a census-designated place (CDP) in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, on the West Bank of the Mississippi River. Belle Chasse is part of the Greater New Orleans Metropolitan area. The population was 9,848 at the 2000 census.

There is little concurrence regarding the origin of the name Belle Chasse. In French, belle chasse literally means "beautiful hunting." It is widely believed that it was named so for the richness of wildlife the initial French settlers observed when they first settled in the region. Others say that Belle Chasse was named after a Colonel Joseph D. Bellechasse, who lived in New Orleans around the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century. Belle Chasse was the home town of Confederate statesman Judah P. Benjamin. Belle Chasse is the largest town in Plaquemines Parish.

Benny Rousselle, a former member of the Louisiana House of Representatives and the former president of Plaquemines Parish government, is from Belle Chasse.

Belle Chasse is home to Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base New Orleans, a Naval Air Station for the U.S. Navy Reserve.[1]

Contents

History

It was founded in 1941 the south shore of Lake Pontchartrain, but in 1957 it relocated to its current location and has subsequently been designated as a Joint Forces Reserve Air Station. It is home to various naval air units as well as an Air Force Reserve fighter squadron and a Marine Corps Reserve helicopter unit. In March 2009, U.S. Navy Reserve Airborne Early Warning Squadron 77 (VAW-77) relocated its six E-2C aircraft from NAS Atlanta, GA to Belle Chasse. The squadron routinely deploys to the Caribbean on counter-narcotic operations. The squadron aircrew are all U.S. Naval Reservists while the maintenance department for the aircraft is run by Northrop Grumman Field Services.

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