NEW ORLEANS (WWL-TV) – Feeding people has been a labor of love for Leah Chase for more than six decades. Even now, as she turns 95 years old on Saturday, she is still a regular presence in the kitchen and dining rooms of her landmark Dooky Chase’s restaurant.
Mrs. Chase walks a little slower now because of her knees, but she doesn’t complain. “I love what I do. If I wouldn’t come in this Kitchen every day, I think I would be miserable. My children say, ‘Why don’t you stay home?’ Nope! I don’t want to stay home. I want to do what I do,” she said.
Dooky Chase’s restaurant on Orleans Ave. has been in the Chase family for four generations. Leah came to work in the restaurant after she married the love of her life, Edgar “Dooky” Chase Jr., a marriage that lasted 70 years. “This is the funny thing – when we got married, people told my mother-in-law this is not going to work. I was 23. He was 18. ‘This girl is just going to come in here and ruin your business,’ they said. But I loved Dooky and I know he loved me. “