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Former La. Governor Edwin Edwards Dies At Age 93

courtesy: La. Secretary of State website

EDWIN EDWARDS DIES -  Former Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards has died. According to a statement released by a family spokesman  the former Governor died Monday morning of respiratory problems, which had him in and out of the hospital over the past year.   He leaves behind a political legacy that will no doubt be remembered for many years to come.

Former state representative Republican Wayne Waddell of Shreveport  served in the Louisiana House from 1998 until 2010.  Although on opposite political  parties,  Waddell and Edwin Edwards became friends.  Waddell’s  wife  Susan  passed along his message  concerning  the  former  Governor’s passing.

"It is with profound sorrow that we mourn the passing of our dear friend, Edwin's enthusiasm, leadership, and humor inspired us all," Mrs. Waddell said.

Known for his charisma and quick wit,   Edwin Edwards   dominated  Louisiana politics for three decades and served four terms as governor  but his tenure was overshadowed.  In 2001 He was convicted of corruption in a riverboat licensing scheme.   He concluded 8 years of a 10 year federal prison sentence and left prison in 2011 at age 83, but  his flamboyant character was still intact.   He soon married his third wife, Trina, a prison pen-pal 50 years his junior and together had a son who is now 7 years old. After prison Edwin Edwards  landed a short-lived reality TV series AND at 87 unsuccessfully ran for Congress.  In a 2014 interview on CNN, Edwin Edwards spoke about his congressional bid and the critics who focused on his federal conviction.

"Nobody's ever charged me or accused me of taking money from the taxpayers, it has nothing to do with my career as a public official, nothing!" Former La. Governor Edwin Edwards

Credit Courtesy: AP Photo
Courtesy: AP Photo
ONE MORE TIME - Former La. Governor Edwin Edwards along with his third wife Trina as he ran for congress in 2014.

"People say we'll they're all crooks anyhow, you might as weel send an experienced one," Edwards quipped. "Nobody's ever charged me or accused me of taking money from the taxpayers, it has nothing to do with my career as a public official, nothing!"

On Sunday July 4th,  Edwin Edwards was taken by ambulance to the emergency room after complaining about pain in his right lung.  Doctors advised he be placed under hospice care, which he was  at his home in Gonzalez, outside  Baton Rouge.   He insisted on letting the media know that the move was more about healthcare  convenience and not a sign of impending death.   But  he  succumbed to his health issues yesterday morning.   Former Governor Edwin Edwards  known by the nicknames “Fast Eddy”, the  “Cajun Prince” and “Silver Fox”   was  93.                                       

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years' broadcast and media experience to Red River Radio. He began his career as a radio news reporter and transitioned to television journalism and newsmagazine production. Chuck studied mass communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles. He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.