At first, Teri Lucas is at a loss to describe just how her mother, Gloria Benigno, will be missed in the Cedar Point community of Bay St. Louis, a place where she and husband Lukey lived in the same Felicity Street home for more than 50 years
Benigno grew up in the Bay, graduated from St. Joseph Academy in 1947 and worked a couple of years in New Orleans before returning to the Bay.
"She had had seriously declining health for the last year," Lucas said, "but she still liked to make her twice weekly visits to Casino Magic over here. Always in daytime; never at night. Her friends (employees) from the casino even called to check on her right before the storm."
Beyond that, Benigno loved her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, "and her sports and soap operas on TV," her daughter said. "And she loved the pansies Daddy planted for her. He had just bought a whole bunch of them for her for fall. They were on the front porch" when Katrina came calling.
Benigno and her husband would have celebrated their 51st wedding anniversary on Sept. 9.