LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – A New Iberia man at the age of 98-years-old feels like a champ with every year he conquers. “How do I feel? I feel like a champ and I thank The Good Lord for it,” says Wilfred Placide.
Wilfred spent 38 years working for Southern Pacific Railroad. When his wife passed away, he became both father and mother to his five children. “I raised my children and that’s why you see I have good children. I raised them.”
Eventually Wilfred remarried the woman who stands by his side today. He calls her a good woman. “I call her in the middle of the night ‘Mary’ and she’s right there for me. I love her,” adds Wilfred.
Wilfred has had his ups and downs. He explains that his mother passed away when he was young. Wilfred and his sister were raised by his grandmother; and then by his father and stepmother. “I never knew my mother. My mother died when I was two years old.”
The ring he wears speaks to how he lives his life. Wilfred is Mason. He’s part of a recognized and respected fraternal order. The ring signifies his dedication. It’s a 33rd Degree Mason ring worn only by those who are truly invested. “Masonry comes from your heart; that’s where it comes from your heart.”
Wilfred has some advice for young men about disrespect and violence. “Stop the killing and love one another. Put those guns and knives away and love your brother as you love yourself,” says Wilfred.
In light of all his accomplishments, Wilfred remains a humble man. “The only thing I wish is that I could have been a better man to my family,” adds Wilfred.
“I must have done something right in my life that the Lord kept me here 98 years. I must have done something right.”