If you ask Tim LaBowe, he’ll tell you he’s settled into the perfect retirement job. Hired last year as boat launch steward for the Twin Parish Port, Tim maintains the boat launch and marina. “The job keeps me walking and staying active,” he says adding “I get to talk to the fishermen who are launching boats.”
Originally from Jennings, Tim has lived five miles north of Delcambre for 15 years, with his wife, and even though he doesn’t live “in town,” he considers himself of member of the Delcambre community. “I like the country atmosphere,” he notes.
His days begin at 6:30 at the boat launch, keeping the nearly 10-acre property clean of trash, making sure faucets are working and tending to other maintenance duties. Then it’s off to the marina to do the same, also making sure there are no leaks in the water lines.
After working 40 years as an operations manager in the oil and gas industry, Tim considers his work now as a great part-time job taking him outdoors and near the water. “I love being around water, and boats are a great interest to me,” he remarks. “There’s always beautiful boats to see at the marina – it’s a great fit for me,” he says. The greatest thing is when the boats come in and people line up to buy shrimp.”
A quiet team player, Tim pulls double-duty on market days – like his coworkers. On the first Saturday of the month, he arrives at the Pavilion early in the morning to set up tables, chairs, tents and trash cans. As things get busy after 9:00, he’s on the sidelines waiting to help troubleshoot any need, whether it’s fetching more ice for the refreshments stand or priming the water tank in the food trailer. For him, it satisfying seeing it all come together. “I like seeing all the locals and people from surrounding areas who come and sell their products. The market is a benefit to everyone around us. I’m thankful for having this job; I love what I’m doing.”
Tim adds that he’s looking forward to next year when the Port Infrastructure Development Program grant will bring money for the dredging of the canal and “lifting up the old sunken shrimp boats.”
When he’s not working next to the water, Tim is on the water fishing for perch or bass. In the fall and winter, there’s a good chance you’ll find him in a duck or deer blind. However, he considers his most quality time as that spent with any of his seven grandchildren – the newest one just born in July.