Hot shot: Man keeps moving

Published 12:51 am Monday, May 4, 2009

NATCHEZ — Stretched over a pool table lining up a bank shot, Milton Cassels does not look, or act, his age.

When The Dart landed at the Natchez Senior Center Friday afternoon, Cassels, 91, was finishing up one of his many games of pool.

“You have to have something to do,” he said eyeing-up a shot. “If you sit on the couch all day long you won’t last very long. You’ll go down like an iron wedge in water.”

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Cassels has been shooting pool for so long now, he almost cannot remember when he started.

“I love this,” he said. “I’m here almost every day.”

In the early 1980s, Cassels retired from International Paper and said he’s kept a focus on staying active ever since.

When he’s not shooting pool, he’s on foot.

Cassels, in addition to his regular pool games, walks a mile and a half almost every day.

And while Cassels does not look like a man in his 90s, he said he hasn’t given much though to possibly seeing 100.

“I’ll just be here until the good Lord is ready for me,” he said, chalking his cue.

And until the good Lord is ready for Cassels, Cassels will probably be playing nine-ball.

Cassels said sometimes he plays up to 20 games a day.

Cassels said he first developed a love for the game hanging out in a pool hall in Gloster as a youngster.

“It was almost all there was to do then,” he said.

And while Cassels is a great shot, he’s quick to admit he’s not the best.

“Now there is a guy who almost never misses a shot,” he said as Willie Powell walked in the room. “He’s unbelievable.”

Cassels racks the balls and Powell, 77, breaks them with a loud crack.

“This is the sport I love,” Powell said just before making three shots in a row. “This is what we love to do.”