2002 Shrimp King Believes In Hard Work

Just before dawn, you can find Robert Begnaud and his two deckhands hitting the Mississippi Sound.

"The wind picks up as the day goes on, and if you don't get an early start then it'll be too rough later in the day to catch your oysters. Also, you get to go home, rest and do what you need to do," Begnaud said.

Begnaud usually searches for oysters around Henderson Point Reef. Begnaud has been working on boats since he was 15 years old.

"My father was doing it when I was a kid and he took me with him several times. I enjoyed it and felt like it was something to do."

For 45 years, Begnaud has made a living as a fisherman and raising a family of five children. He works year-round, drudging for oysters from October to early May, then shrimping between June and September.

At the age of 59, he is still going strong.

"I don't mind hard work. I prefer to work. As long as I'm in decent health, I'll do it."

Begnaud plans to continue working the waters six days a week.

"I enjoy it, I really do. I love it, and that's why I'm still doing it."

Begnaud will be crowned as the shrimp king on Saturday.