NORMAN & NORMAN BURMAH – 82 YEARS
Introduced by a close friend, Norman and Norma Burmah met at the “Roof Garden Dance Hall” in New Orleans during a live performance by Louis Armstrong playing their theme song “What a Wonderful World.” They were married shortly thereafter on January 26, 1931, and the two have remained inseparable.
“Maw” and “Paw,” as their family fondly calls them, begin each day in prayer. Norma claims that she’s a “young 98” and continues to prove this through her love for parties and her independent trip to France only years ago. Norma has never driven a day in her life! However, Norman is not shy of his achievements adding that he drove until he was 97 and rode his first jet-ski at 92! While he’s a student of politics, football and game shows, she’s a fan of “Lawrence Welk” and enjoys old movies. They created a livelihood together, operating a thriving catering business inspired by their Creole heritage.
They lived in New Orleans until 2005, and, to this day, they both remain deeply devoted New Orleans Saints fans! After tragically losing their home during Hurricane Katrina, the Burmahs moved to Marksville, La. At 97 years of age, Norman proudly purchased their new home where they independently live along with their prize Rooster, “Jindal.”
They have been blessed with a healthy family consisting of two children, six grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren!
LAWRENCE & VARRIE PLAYER – 78 YEARS
DEVANCE & MATTIE RAINS – 77 YEARS
Mattie and Devance Rains were married in May 1935. Growing up in the same community, they started dating when Mattie was a senior in high school. Devance (5 years older) was already a struggling farmer. They survived the Depression, WWII, and many ups and downs over the years, but always remained a team!
WILLIE CLYDE & KATHERYN FLORES – 77 YEARS
Willie (Sonny) and Katheryn (Kat) Flores were married on November 16, 1935 in El Dorado, AK.
Sonny was an avid sports fan and played semi-pro baseball and would later coach a young men’s baseball team. Sonny also provided financial aid to young men who were not capable of funding their baseball training. Other than sports, Sonny was a boiler maker by trade and did not retire until he was seventy years old. Politically, he held the office of mayor of Rodessa for seven years. Kat worked as a nurses aide in a nearby medical clinic. After retirement, they were both public librarians in their small town. At age ninety, Sonny was the oldest public librarian in the state of Louisiana. Sonny is currently ninety-six and resides in a nursing home. He enjoys watching people come and go and looks forward to family members bringing him “the love of his life” to visit him.
Together, Sonny and Kat have three children, four grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren. Their children include Bob Flores, Sunny J. Watts, and Dan Flores.
PLACIDE & EMILY MORAN – 76 YEARS
Placide Moran (known as “Papa” to most everyone), 97, and his wife Emily Marks
Moran, 92, celebrated their 76th wedding anniversary on December 12, 2012. They
met in 1936 at a large Cajun style reunion and after a short courtship, were married in
Arnaudville, LA on December 12, 1936, where they lived until 1944. Their first home
was built by their own hands from timber they cut and dried themselves. This being
the time of The Great Depression, the early years of marriage were trying and difficult,
but they worked side by side every day to make a move to Port Barre, LA and build
a successful life for themselves and their children.
Placide farmed and managed many acres of land. Emily helped to farm the land, managed to raise four children,
and maintain what the grandchildren call “the most orderly home in the world”. Devout
Catholics, the Moran’s are members of Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church in Port
Together they raised four children, Rodney Moran who now lives in Texas, Versie
Moran Hebert of Rayne, LA, Charles Moran and Blaine Moran, both who still reside in
Port Barre, LA. They have seven grandchildren, eleven great-grandchildren and six
They witnessed the depression and watched the moon landing on television (which
Placide still says was all a fake), raised their children, worked hard and have now
retired. They now comfortably live at Senior Village in Opelousas, LA.
Both Placide and Emily agree that the secrets of a long successful marriage are
devotion to The Lord Jesus Christ, dedication and unconditional love to their family and
`“to get on and ride ‘til the wheels fall off”.
FRANCIS & EDNA ADAMS – 76 YEARS
Mr. and Mrs. Adams met on Sala Avenue, in Westwego, where Mrs. Edna lived with her mother. They would enjoy each other’s company at a local eatery and dance hall called Larry’s On The Hill and enjoy their first dance to “Sentimental Journey.” They were married January 28, 1937. Shortly afterwards, Mr. Francis would join the war effort during WWII, and miraculously would be one of seven brothers who all fought and all returned home from the war. Well-versed in many trades, Mr. Adams returned to pursue his career and to build he and Edna’s first home together where they still reside today.
EARL & BETTY HARPS – 75 YEARS
Both Earl and Betty had a rough time growing up. Earl went to work on a farm when he was 13 years old. Earl left before he graduated high school. They met at a school function when Earl was 19 and Betty was 16. They got married in 1937 and left their families behind them.
Today, they enjoy having their granddaughter, Tonya, driving them around town to doctors appointments, taking their dog, Teddy, with them on these trips and listening to the same Cd, Blake Shelton’s first CD.
The Harps had three daughters: Saundra, Judy and Debra; two of which have deceased. The Harps moved from Ohio to Louisiana, but their daughter Judy still resides in Ohio.
EDGAR & MARY EMMA BLAND – 75 YEARS
Edgar and Mary Emma Bland were sweethearts in Fair Park High School when they married in 1937. Edgar went on to Centenary College where he played saxophone in a group called College Capers. After college, he worked for Interstate Oil Pipeline and was soon offered flight training to prepare for a new job flying a Piper Cub low over the pipeline routes to spot gas leaks. Mary Emma decided she was too young to be a widow and so vetoed that opportunity.
He soon joined the family business at Jewella Garage Paint and Top Company on Greenwood Road across from the football stadium. When the first generation retired, Edgar bought out the business and continued it until his retirement.
The couple marked their 75th wedding anniversary November 26, 2012, and in January 2013 they sold their home place and downsized to an apartment at The Oaks of Louisiana in Shreveport where they continue an active life. They are faithful members of Summer Grove Baptist Church.
For many years at Ingleside Baptist Church, Edgar was Sunday School superintendent and a deacon. Mary Emma was a beautician and founded her own beauty shop. She has been a lifetime member of the Homemakers Club, and until recently the couple guided the monthly luncheon meetings of early Fair Park alumni. Mr. Bland is still an active Notary Public.
CLYDE & GENEVA COCKERHAM – 73 YEARS
“Clyde Cockerham was driving his Model A Ford when he laid eyes on the beautiful Geneva Oubre, age 15, as she was walking down the street. Their courtship was kept secret in the beginning because Clyde was 18. Even though this was legal and socially acceptable in those days, Gene had to “slip out” to spend time with her sweetheart without the knowledge of her mother.
The two would walk together for miles and see picture shows in Livingston at the cost of 15 cents. After seven months, the couple married in front of a justice of the peace in May of 1939. The two were not married fro 5 years when Clyde was drafted in 1943. After he received training in Fort McLellan, Ala., Clyde joined the 3rd Infantry Division soon after the invasion in France and stayed in Germany until the end of World War II.
Mr. Cockerham survived the Siegfried Line with old Patton and the Battle of the Bulge to return to his beloved. While Clyde was fighting for his country, Mrs. Cockerham was raising their three children, Barbara Jean, C.C. Jr. and Raymond.
After a lot of prayer from his wife and family, Clyde returned home when their third child, Raymond, was 13 months old.
The father of three worked for Exxon for 36 years and retired in 1970. The couple are charter members of Plainview Baptist Church.
After 73 years of marriage, the two lovebirds continue working on their garden and raising cows. They also go camping in Madisonville with the family a couple of times a year. Mr. Cockerham, age 91, and Mrs. Cockerham, age 88, now have six grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren and 12 great-great grandchildren. “ – Source: Livingston Parish News
By Hilda Guedry:
Well, we have been dancing together ever since. He is still a good dancer, but a little slower. After a few years of “courting,” we married, had a daughter, then it all changed, for World War ll started, and Ed was drafted.
He served in the army’s 41st Infantry division, stationed in the Philippines. He vividly remembers sailing under the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, heading for duty, and wondering if he would ever make it back home. My memory of that time was sadness and fear, for I was left alone with our daughter, and unsure of the future.
That is actually when I fell in love with the song “I left my heart in San Francisco”, appropriately, so I still love that song. Well, Ed did return, and we settled down in Port Allen, had another daughter, and shared a very fulfilled life there.
After 39 years, Ed retired from Exxon. He was an avid golfer and still plays a little. I became a painter, taught myself piano, as well as, played golf. We both loved travelling. As a hobby, Ed has made little birdhouses for everyone he knows.
I am into my computer and Iphone and love learning new things.
Now in our golden years, we are living in our home in Brusly, surrounded by family and friends. We are grateful for our 2 daughters, our 6 grandchildren, and 8 great grandchildren, as well as each other.
We are hoping for a few more anniversaries, God willing!