NEW ORLEANS – Whether it’s sharing stories or participating in Wednesday night’s second line, people have paid tribute to Fats Domino in their own way. Some though feel a more permanent tribute should take place.
"You can't live forever,” said Jay McCaddin, who came from Mobile for the second line celebrating Fats' life.
“But it's such a loss to the world of music and he's such a wonderful man and we miss him. I got to meet him again after they replaced his gold records after the storm at Tipitina’s and he was just finishing up a Heineken beer, and I said, ‘Fats you mind if I have that old beer bottle?' And he looked at me and smiled and said, 'No sir not at all.' He signed it for me, shook my hand, I said it was a pleasure to meet you, he smiled at me and walked off. I'll never forget that."
In addition to the second line, the Saints honored Fats by putting his name on their helmets. A mural was also done near Franklin and St. Claude showing Fats -- all smiles.
"Why honor him?” said Paula Chamberlain, from Westwego. “He was the beginning of rock n' roll and we're big rock n' roll fans from the very beginning."
Residents appreciate what’s being done, but also ask for something more permanent for someone loved by so many.
"It's history and it's part of us,” said Carolyn Cousin Warren from Slidell.
"Let's turn this street to Fats Domino Street paying tribute to his home and his studio,” said Rhonda White of New Orleans.
One thing people agree on is Fats should be honored in some way here in New Orleans. Many though have their own idea on what should be done.
"Absolutely. They should whether it be a holiday once a year, or name a street or just something to commemorate the history of Fats Domino,” said Harold Warren of Chicago.
"Maybe turn his home into a museum, a historical site,” said Chamberlain and McCaddin.
On Twitter, people even suggested changing what was ‘Lee Circle’ to ‘Fats Circle.’
"That would be great,” White said. “I think people would love that also."
However, no matter what’s decided, fans just want his name to live on. Because while his music struck a chord across the world, it was Fats who walked into the hearts of many in his hometown of New Orleans.
"We just don't want to forget the history of his music, his melodies, and all that he's done for this city,” Warren said.
Eyewitness News sent an e-mail to the city asking if there were any plans for a Fats tribute. As of Wednesday evening, no response had been received.
Earlier Wednesday, Fats’ family sent a statement that said:
“The family of Fats Domino would like to thank everyone for all the beautiful words, tributes and celebrations honoring our father. We would especially like to thank his beloved city of New Orleans. New Orleans is a city like none other and there was no place he would rather be. We have been truly overwhelmed by the worldwide expressions of love and gratitude for our father and the music he shared with the world for so many years. The family will notify the media of the final arrangements.”
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