At 73, Tyrone Burton says he's honored and privileged to work alongside his lovely wife, Vera, who also cuts and styles hair. The longtime Biloxi barber is being recognized for his 52 years of being a successful businessman and community leader.
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -
The year was 1962. John F. Kennedy was in the White House and Johnny Carson began hosting the "Tonight Show."
That same year, an ambitious young man from Louisiana, opened a barber shop in Biloxi.
A half century later, the community wants to honor his success and leadership.
"Fifty-two years and still enjoying it," said barber Tyrone Burton, as he reflected on opening his business in Biloxi.
Burton chose his career at an early age.
"This was my dream. And all I could see after the tenth or 11th grade was being a stylist," he said, while tending to a longtime customer's hair.
That dream brought him from Franklinton, Louisiana to Main Street, Biloxi. And he's never looked back.
"I love it from the moment I made it to town, the second day of '62. I said, this is the place. And I think we're so unique with the people in Biloxi. They've been so courteous and very supportive," he reflected.
He's a man who enjoys his job and counts his blessings; one of which works beside him, his wife, Vera, who also cuts and styles hair.
"Cause when she first come in, I'd say, 'Let the lady cut your hair.' 'I never let a lady cut my hair.' I said, 'Try it'. They've been with her ever since," he said with a grin.
Not only does his wife cut hair, his daughter works in the adjoining salon and a son is also a barber.
"They say, what they say is, two things goes on: The funeral home and the barber shop. Yeah, we're one of the two," he said with a smile.
He's quick witted, a wiz with the clippers and a man who's greatly respected in this Main Street community.
"Right after Katrina, he jumped right in and he was the first business open after Katrina. To me, it's a pillar. He's a pillar of the community," said Ward 2 Biloxi City Councilman Felix Gines.
This pillar of the community and definite people person will be honored Saturday night at the nearby community center. The nearly 73-year-old family man is excited about the occasion and humbled at the recognition.
"I try to be the best I can be. In order to be that, you have to have the love for people," said the beloved barber.
City Councilman Gines and resident Kay Horne helped organize the recognition ceremony for Tyrone Burton.