90 Plus: Theresa Lawrence

Renee Allen's 90 Plus

Exactly a week ago, Theresa Lawrence, of Sunset, celebrated her 92nd birthday.

Lawrence says her mother was a midwife.

“I say momma, I’m going to have this baby at home. She said ‘Oh no, you’re going to the hospital,'” she said.

After high school, Lawrence completed one year at Xavier University in New Orleans. Lawrence says instead of going back to college, she got married.

“My husband promised my mama I could go back to school and get that degree,” she said.

Theresa says her husband is a World War II veteran. They met when he returned home from the war. “Finally we got married we lived together over 50 years.”

Together they had eight children. He worked as a church janitor.
She says a short time later he became a school bus driver – one of the few African American drivers in those days.

Theresa says she spent her years teaching and directing a Headstart program for the Grand Coteau/Sunset area.

“We had five classrooms and each classroom had 20 children. That’s over a 100 children we had,” she said.

Eventually, at 39 years old, Theresa went back to college to finish her education.

At 50 years old, she graduated with a degree from Southern University.

“It was a good feeling that I followed a promise to Mama that I would get that degree.”

She says all but two of her children are married that includes her youngest son.

“He takes care of me. We take care of each other,” she said.

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