Not a bayou is this, but the corner of LaSalle St. and NE Railroad Avenue at about 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 10. Few cars were able to navigate the streets where youngsters, enjoying a forced school holiday, frolicked in motorboats. The 4.5 inches of rain in less than one hour was not a record, but flooded the city in a way equalled only by the 14.55 inches of rain which fell overnight here in May, 1963.
Looking Back: May 1976
May 6, 1976
• Trojan World Queen I, Toni Aucoin, places the crown of the Trojan World realm on her successor, Kay Ortego, while Trojan World chairman Preston Aucoin beamed his approval. Queen Toni is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Aucoin and the new queen is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J.D. Ortego, all of Ville Platte.
• The Annual Banquet of the Ville Platte High School FFA was at the school cafeteria. Donna Aguillard, presiding officer, presented a plaque to Principal Lionel Ardoin for his many years of service and dedication to the Ville Platte High School Future Farmers of America Chapter. The Guest Speaker was Dr. Dale Reed, assistant superintendent of education in charge of vocational education in Evangeline Parish.
May 13, 1976
• The Chicot High Auditorium was leveled by fire Friday morning and valiant efforts by the five fire departments kept the flames from spreading to nearby school buildings. The Ville Platte Fire Dept. responded to the 9:40 a.m. alarm and called for assistance from area departments when the magnitude of the fire was determined. The building had formerly been used as a gymnasium, but had been converted to an auditorium several years before. It was unoccupied at the time of the fire, and no one was injured. Students in the nearby buildings were evacuated safely and sent home on buses which had been called back to the school.
• Miss Pine Prairie for 1976 was chosen May 1 at the annual Miss Pine Prairie Pageant held in the Pine Prairie High School Auditorium. She was Jennifer Guillory, 17-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ulfay Guillory. She was selected from a field of 16 contestants at the event sponsored by the Pine Prairie Panthers Booster Club.
May 20, 1976
• A local drug theft was quickly solved by the Ville Platte City Police with cooperation from the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Department. Three persons were arrested and stolen drugs were recovered only hours after the theft was discovered. Chief Harry Vidrine displays the 18 bottles of pills and other substances, including syringes that were taken early that Monday morning from the office of Dr. Barney Fusilier.
• Fr. Joseph Brennan, pastor of Our Lady, Queen of All Saints Catholic Church, celebrated his seventeenth anniversary in the priesthood of God by saying a special Mass of Thanksgiving on May 6, 1976. During his sermon he thanked God for the opportunity of serving His people in this diocese. A reception followed the mass with coffee and doughnuts served at the rectory for all parishioners who attended.
May 27, 1976
• An unusual fire inside the huge concrete storage bins caused much concern and posed a real challenge to the Ville Platte Fire Department. Thousands of barrels of rice stored in the structures at Ville Platte Rice Dryer were endangered by the fire, the origin of which was not positive. Fire hoses had to be lifted by block and tackle almost 100 feet high so that water could be applied to the burning rice within the bins. Several firemen and personnel from the dryer volunteered to stay atop the building in the fire fighting efforts despite the reported danger of an explosion similar to one which destroyed a Houston dryer-elevator. The ground-based firemen supplying help to the men atop the roof with hoses and a makeshift chair which was lowered into the holes to fight the fire at close quarters. No estimate of damage was released.