90-year-old baton twirler gets set to show her moves at LSU game

Published: Nov. 17, 2023 at 10:14 PM CST
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SLIDELL (WVUE) - 90-year-old Slidell resident Catherine Charitat loves twirling batons. She said she is excited because she is set to lead LSU’s Golden Band from Tigerland on the field during the school’s home game against Georgia State on Saturday (Nov. 18). It is an alumni recognition game.

“Makes me feel young again,” Charitat said.

Charitat was a majorette at LSU (Louisiana State University) back in the 1950s. She was a music major and said this is where her love for baton twirling began.

“It has been a part of my life for a good while,” she said. “I was in the band and was also in the chorus. So, at that time music was important to me.”

She would go on to teach girls how to twirl batons after graduating. Now, she will own the 50-yard line at the place where she shined as a student 70 years ago.

Her son Andy Charitat said he is amazed to see his mother still so active at her age.

“I get goosebumps every time I think about it,” Charitat said.

Charitat said seeing his mom twirling brings him back to the old days.

“She has always been musical and twirling those batons,” he said. “My brother and I used to sword fight with the batons when we were kids.”

This is not her first encore appearance as a senior at Tiger Stadium. During another alumni game, Charitat led the band onto the field a few years ago. Now, she has a chance to give it another go.

“When mom says I got here because I was taking care of myself, my whole life, she means it. She still does that,” said Andy Charitat.

Charitat said his mother’s life should inspire people, young and old. He also said he hopes to have this much energy when he is 90.

“If I get those genes, I’ll be happy, you know,” he said. “She is going to survive all of us.”

Catherine said she is thankful for a chance to have a chance to put her marching shoes back on.

“It gives me a little bit of a memory of what was,” she said.

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