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Jim Bradshaw

My favorite baseball story

This year’s all-too-brief prospect of an all-Chicago World Series would have renewed one of the few longstanding disagreements between my dad and myself.
I have been a Cubs fan since I was a kid. He pulled for the White Sox.
I started following the Cubs because they played only day games in the 1950s and their broadcasts came in loud and clear in Lake Charles most summer afternoons.

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Jim Bradshaw

War hero’s cause moves forward

The movement to proclaim Father Joseph Verbis Lafleur a saint has taken an important step with the opening of his Cause for Canonization by the Vatican.
The heroic World War II chaplain, who was born in Ville Platte, is now the third person from south Louisiana to be entered into the official process of investigation for sainthood. Bishop Douglas Deshotel began the process for Charlene Richard, the young girl from Acadia Parish, and Auguste “Nonco” Pelafigue of Arnaudville in January, but the announcement for Father Lafleur was delayed by red tape.

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Jim Bradshaw

Earning the right to gripe

I cast my first presidential vote in 1952. It may have been illegal since I was only seven years old at the time, but the statute of limitations has probably run out by now. Besides, I didn’t actually mark the X on the paper ballot; I just dropped the folded slip through the slot in the collection box.

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Jim Bradshaw

What in the world were we thinking?

I am becoming increasingly convinced that if I dig just two feet down at any place in my yard, I will dig into a huge underground sea of fire ants. It may spread for miles and miles.
Why else would it be that I can dump granules “guaranteed to kill the queen, destroy the colony, and wreak general mayhem on antdom,” and within hours find a new hill just two feet away from the old one?
The ants just scoff at my efforts and move a few doors down. I swear that I’ve heard a chorus of subterranean laughter as I patrolled my yard for ant hills.

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Jim Bradshaw

Straight shooters from the bayous

Louisiana’s French speakers were in serious demand during World War II, especially when interpreters were needed as GIs fought their way across France after D-Day. But south Louisiana’s French speakers were also wanted for their fighting ability and even their typing skills.
Men from south Louisiana caught the eye of the Marine Corps early in the war. At the beginning of 1942, the brass sent Capt. Bob Mouton, a former congressman and a member of the Marine Reserves, into the byways to “get the best men from the bayou country.”

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