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The brilliant Katy Reckdahl has written another of her gems for nola.com, highlighting the passing of a great neighbor and community leader, Mr. Chill. His chosen work allowed him the platform to change his life and find his path, thereby helping generations of New Orleanians.


Finally, when he tired of the streets, he called his mother and told her he was going to barber school. He stayed in her house for several months, taking the bus to his classes. For his final test for his barber’s license, he cut the hair of two young teenagers, his son, Wilbert Wilson Jr., and his nephew Harry Cass.

“He wasn’t that great of a barber at first,” Cass said. “But he worked at it, like he worked at everything. So he kept cutting and kept cutting, and he got good at it.”