Biloxi Resident Named Mississippi Ageless Hero - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

03/25/04

Biloxi Resident Named Mississippi Ageless Hero

"This came special delivery, and I couldn't imagine...a big envelope you know and I signed for it, and I came inside and I opened and thought oh dear, I couldn't imagine I had been selected over 400 people. This must be a mistake," said Hortense Gaude'.

No it was not a mistake.

Hortense Gaude' or "Tonsie" will be honored as a Mississippi Ageless Hero.

She's spent her life helping others in the community, putting in more than 10,000 hours of volunteer work at the Biloxi Regional Medical Center.

"The nurses are wonderful but they're busy. They're busy with patients. And very often the sick need someone to talk to. You know, I pull up my chair and if they want to talk to me, I advise them, all depending on the condition of the patient of course," said Gaude'.

All of Tonsie's goodness comes from a place you would least expect - grief.

She has lost her three children, all ten of her brothers and sisters, and she recently lost her best friend.

But she says God has left her here 100 years to do something besides grieve, and that's to do His work.

"In helping others we help ourselves, so if I have anything to say, it would be to always look out for the less fortunate," said Gaude'.

On top of all of her accomplishments, Tonsie still drives to the hospital, church, and the grocery store.

She says when you're 100, there's not too much to do.

By Karla Redditte

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