Window on history closes

BREAUX BRIDGE – A local treasure has been lost.

A generation knew Corinne Murphy as a sprightly yet proper, twinkle-eyed centenarian frequently arrayed in a crown or sash conveying one honorific status or another.

She was also a child who rode in horse-drawn wagons to family reunions between here and Lafayette, a pretty young girl who enjoyed the weekly dances once held downtown, a young working woman, a young wife traveling to different parts of the country, a young mother.

Ms. Corinne saw a lot of changes in her 104 years and remained mentally agile.

It was Mayor Jack Dale Delhomme – a man known to be both a soft touch for the elderly and one who appreciates the value to Breaux Bridge of its people – who called Mrs. Murphy a “treasure.”

“You know, you don’t realize the true value of something or someone until they’re gone,” Delhomme said.

“We should have done more with her. She should have gone to all the schools. There’s so much she could have told the young people today.”

Corinne Murphy did get out a lot, gracing the dais of many a Council on Aging or similar kind of banquet. Dressed sometimes with little white gloves like the perfect little lady.

“When I think of Mrs. Murphy – and I only met her after I became mayor – the term ‘grace’ comes to mind,” said Delhomme. “She had that old-style, genteel way about her that is largely missing from society today.”

After she got a couple of birthdays over 100 with no sign of slowing down, people might have started taking her for granted, as though Ms. Corinne would be around forever.

But now she’s gone, and Breaux Bridge is the less.

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