National American Miss Louisiana Queens Meet Louisiana’s State Reptile

Published 1:28 pm Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Lily Troxler, exceeded her own expectations when she signed up as an 8th grader at Harry Hurst Middle to volunteer for the Wetland Watchers Service-Learning Program.

“Being able to have been a part of the Wetland Watchers as an 8th grader that educates our youth on wildlife and promotes conservation efforts for our community was such an incredible experience.” said Lily. “Honestly, at first I was terrified of snakes, mainly because I didn’t understand them. Mr. Barry Guillot helped me feel comfortable handling these reptiles and before long I was holding a snake over 6 feet long named Nagini!”

Three years later, Lily is currently a Junior at Destrehan High, continues to volunteer for Wetland Watchers when time allows, and is the reigning National American Miss Louisiana Jr Teen Queen.

“Wetland Watchers has provided opportunities for myself and thousands of other students of St Charles Parish Public Schools and without Mr. Guillot we would not have had these chances.He has made such an impact on so many people’s lives and continues to do so.”

When we discussed having a photoshoot at Fontainebleau State Park, we talked about having Mr. Guillot bring some alligators and snakes. I was so excited that my sister queens would have the same experience I had in middle school.

Lily was joined for the photo shoot at Fontainebleau State Park by  Morgan City native Layla Richoux who is the National American Miss Louisiana Teen Queen and Alayna Arslan, the National American Louisiana Princess Queen. Both were able to overcome their fears and hold the snakes and alligators.

“I’m really proud of all three of the young ladies” smiled Hurst science teacher and Wetland Watchers founder Barry Guillot. “ Lily has held all these animals for years since she was in eighth grade, but the other two young ladies were super scared to hold alligators and snakes. Louisiana can be proud, said all three of these queens are not only intelligent and well spoken, but also very courageous!”