Three generations of the Hambrice family continue their support of Camp Grant Walker including, from left, Jean Corley Hambrice, Bernie Hambrice, Kelsey Hambrice, Katie Hambrice, Suelynn Corley and Jerry Hambrice. Photo provided by Katie Hambrice.
For many families, attending 4-H summer camp is a family tradition. That includes the Hambrices. The St. Bernard Parish family has attended 4-H camp for multiple generations.
Bernie Hambrice was a seventh grader at Meraux Elementary School the first time she attended Camp Grant Walker in 1949. She remembers sleeping in screened cabins, swimming in the creek and making arts and crafts with friends. She and can still recall cheers and songs that were sung in the Greek Theatre.
Her love for camping didn’t end there. She returned to camp as an adult volunteer in 1992 and camped with 4-H members from St. Bernard Parish until 2000. During that time, her son Jerry Hambrice was a camper and later returned as an adult leader. Jerry remembers the friends he made at camp, participating in archery, and attending the dance each night.
As the years passed, Bernie and Jerry would share stories of their camp experiences with the next generation, and Bernie’s granddaughters couldn’t wait to join 4-H and attend summer camp. The girls – Suelynn Corley, Katie Hambrice and Kelsey Hambrice – all headed to camp in their youth and Katie returned this year as a counselor. Katie credits 4-H with her improved confidence and leadership skills and now serves on the 4-H Executive Board as a regional representative.
While some things at camp have remained the same, Bernie Hambrice was happy to hear from her granddaughters about the improvements and additions to camp. All three generations continue to serve as 4-H volunteers, and Bernie was inducted into the Louisiana 4-H Hall of Fame in 2008.
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