LD’s fond memories of Governor Edwin Edwards and their time together. Please leave your comments and memories below. If you haven’t yet subscribe to the Count Time weekly alerts.
Well done, good and faithful servant…
Gov Edwin Edwards Funeral Services
Former Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards has died at age 93, he will lie in honor in Memorial Hall at the State Capitol on Saturday for the public viewing. The State Capitol will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
At noon Sunday, Edwards’ remains will be moved by carriage and honor guard through the streets of Baton Rouge for a little less than a mile to the Old State Capitol.
He’ll lie in repose at the Old State Capitol on Sunday for a private ceremony for family members and close friends. Louisiana Public Broadcasting (LPB) will stream the service.
The four-term governor died Monday at 7 a.m. in his home of respiratory problems that had plagued him in recent years. He had been hospice care for about week.
Resthaven Gardens of Memory and Funeral Home, which is handling arrangement, says a register book for the public to sign for Edwards will be at the courthouse in Crowley on Thursday July 15, Friday July 16 and Monday July 19. The Courthouse is located on 500 N Parkerson Avenue in Crowley.
Count Time Podcast – Gov Edwin Edwards Unedited Transcript
Good evening. Good evening. Good evening it’s 4:00 PM. Stand up, It’s count time, time for every man and woman to stand up and be counted. Welcome to another edition of Count Time podcast. I am brother LD Azobra formerly named Lyman white. Thank you for joining us today.
Today’s podcast we’ll be going in a little bit different direction in the wake of what all have transpired this week with the death of community leader, friend politician, a true leader warrior, and one that loved his state and community. We all know who this is on Monday, former governor Edwin Edwards passed, transitioned on July the 12th at age of 93, less than four weeks from 94, he was on his way say he wanted to make it to 95. I have a 95th birthday, but the law had other planes. He did not make it, but he is someone that would be truly missed. He was truly love respected by all of, not most of many, any who knew him and most did we all have wonderful, exciting creative stories of this man is legend. What all he did contribute to the community. I know a lot of people might say, well, LD how do you know why can’t I say that we ended up spending some time together.
So very good quality time, or rather show one set us. They wind up doing time together at the federal bureau of prisons in Oakdale, Louisiana, governor hill was, as we all know, was given eight years for veteran charges, too numerous to name. I was also given charges for Medicaid, fraud, conspiracy, and some other things where I had to go do some time in the federal prison. I got a chance to not just visit with him, but got to know him very creative, very, I would say colorful character of a man, very witty may wise, just much, much wisdom, but I just got to want to share a few mothers. Let’s go. We going to call this going down memory lane of all the great memories of governor Edwin outwards, and many of us know him in many, in all communities loved and respected him. But I want to just share a few things that, uh, he and I encountered while we was spending quality time together on a daily basis.
They too many people can say that, right, besides his wife, Trina, but also another friend of mine who was his bulk mate was, uh, uh, we all call him Bobby B. So anybody who knows Bobby knows exactly who am I speaking of Bobby with his suite mates, they shared the same list, space size to go visit. Bobby have conversations with him. And as Bob and I have started having conversation that dove sits there. So we, I started having conversations with the governor and find out a lot of interesting things about him and a lot of great things. And I’m going to start out by just sharing that at doing what we call mail call or mail call out. All of us would line up in a hall during the time for me. I called normally after four o’clock, uh, you know, after four 30, we all sit in there and standing there waiting for them to call our name for mayor.
And as you know, you know, I might get one or two, three letters. Uh, some other guys might get one letter. Most guys didn’t get in it for good. I got all the mail. He took all the mail from everybody. Everybody was writing him. Everybody was concerned about him. Everybody cared about it. And so people would write him on a regular basis. I mean, sometime he’d get 20 pieces of mail in one day. Most people, they need to get one piece of mail. So he was hogging all the mail, but they brought a new that everybody loved and respected to go. One day, there was some new arrivals, a new, we was all at the camp at the time, right? The camp was located in over there next to the, the low federal prison and, uh, immigration, federal prison. So one day a guest probably around either this time or little bit later on August, September, we asked some new arrivals and one of the new arrivals was another governor, a lot of Alabama, governor Don Siegelman, another good and dear friend of mine who had written his book.
Gov, I promise you, I’m gonna read your book. Like I read governor was book. Um, but we, when he arrived, the first thing governor Elle was done is that he went to talk with, uh, speak with former governor Don Siegelman at the camp. And the first thing he told him, he said, well, look, I look, I know you, you’re a governor, I’m a governor, but I’m governor one, you governor too. So we started calling him G one and we call it governance, Siegelman, G2. So that’s when the [inaudible] got started in the federal O’Bear prison. So it gov government showed that he knew who was ranked the highest. He was the number one you’ve been there. And he makes sure you’re going to retain his title as governor. The number one governor. No, what was interesting in, I used to run a teacher. He was the teacher.
I worked in the cafeteria. I just helped to serve the food and do a little cleanup in the kitchen. You know, we’ll go with a pretty big eater. He had a pretty healthy appetite and on chicken di you know, I guess we say all hell to the chicken because the chicken rule in the federal prison, when they’re fried chicken, I mean, they’d done it once a month, once a month. Maybe sometimes twice. But that was major. I mean, when I say Beijing, the whole cop-out was shut down for fried chicken day. Everybody showed up for the fried chicken. So I knew governor, the gov like gov one G one like fried chicken. So what I would do, I would ease a few pieces extra out couldn’t you only put in one piece on a plate, everybody got the same amount on a plate. Nobody got nothing special, right?
But after, you know, got through cleaning up, of course, the guys cook and they gonna fry a few extras. And we had, uh, officer Scott, you know, who oversaw the, the kitchen who did a great job of brother out of Mississippi. Uh, I guess Woodville, Mississippi, but brother Scott was another very colorful character, but he took his job serious and he treated everybody equally. I got to say that about it. And he was a nice guy, hard nose type guy with good old country boy. So he knew what everybody was doing. He knew that, uh, these guys were working for him. These guys was up, we all was in the kitchen. So he makes sure that he looked out for his and his worker. He took care of everybody. So when on that day I knew gov like some like fried chicken. So I would, you know, ease me a few pieces out and I would bring it, put, you know, we wrap it in some night.
We didn’t have fall, but we had that El Surez wrapped paper. So with the syringe rep, I would, uh, you know, wrap the chicken up, put it in my pocket. Cause he couldn’t walk with me in your hand. So he had to put it in your pocket. And I would go down to the gov, a book and eat most time he was in there, he was out walking. He would walk like twice a day, sometimes three times a day, morning, noon. And after an evening he would do some walking. He was still putting on a little weight. He had a little gut at the time, but he pretty much maintained his weight. So I will leave him, you know, one or two pieces of chicken. I liked, I knew what he likes. And he was very appreciative of that. And also would bring something to go from one, go up to from Alabama and also my partner, uh, brother, Austin.
He knew about that. I would take care of brother, Austin, look out for him too. And my partner, Mr. Dixon, he represented the state Senator out of Memphis to the sea. So those are the people I would look out for on a regular basis because of that, you know, gov and I would have good conversations. Uh, one day he was telling me about his dad. He saw his dad whipped the mew and his dad was a preacher. And when he saw it there whipped that view, he was in an accident. Why did he whip the new, why did he hit that new? And he said from that day forward, you know, that, that bothered him, that disturbed him. You know, you never can figure out why his dad whipped the mew. So he said he would never whip, all do harm to animal or no one from that day forward.
And that was interesting to hear him say that because it will be the politician. I thought you, you whipped up all people on a regular basis. Maybe not in a physical way, but in a mental way. And maybe that’s probably why, you know, he was so loved and respected because he treated everybody the same. Like he felt that how you thought about that view is how you felt about people in general, no matter what walks of life, what side who, what part of towel? He pretty much treated everybody the same. So I got a chance to hear a lot of his good stories about growing up and moving across and young man and running for city council, being a lawyer in a small town lawyer, uh, in Crowley, Louisiana, and how he moved up and how you got a chance to meet people and grow with people like dear friend of mine is Greg [inaudible] day at Gervis look floor.
So, you know, he would tell us different stories about these people that he met and got a chance to know and grow with over the years. Right. But also, you know, gov and I was meet up on a regular basis, although the camp is not that big of a place, but he and I, for whatever reason, we had an interest for religious services. So most of the time I would show up at a religious service, whether the Muslim, Krista Buddhists, Jehovah witness, Jewish services, even more size temper. When I show up guess who I see sitting there, the girl he’s sitting right there too. And one day I asked him, I said, why are you going to all the different religious servers? He said, I just always wanted to learn the different dynamics and how different religions work, what they saying and what there would make them work and how they, what the religion is all about.
So he just wants to learn. He had a thirst for knowledge, I guess I would say. Yeah. So he was a matter of fact, one day, he and I was at a skinhead meeting of service. So that does get hit. I’m sorry that Aaron nation, the Aaron nation brothers, they moved at one of their servers. You know, we both wanted to figure it out, like what was going on. And we had to, you had the different Arabic, uh, Muslims who some was, uh, call themself, American Muslim. You had to the Arabic Muslims who was from a reign, Iraq and who had their services. We both show up and we both want to listen. Like it can be black history month, and guess who will be sitting there gov, you want to know what going off of black history month. So he always had a thirst for knowledge, all we was interested in supporting and serving others and hear what others have to say.
So it was, it was an interesting, it was just interesting to see him participate in others with others, along with learning about other histories, I’d say that he was a Jew. He held the job as a teacher in the prison. And this kind of interesting too, because when you think about in prison, they know the importance of keeping all inmates, basically busy doing something. Now they paid you a few dollars. I mean, I forgot what the, what it was, the pay. Might’ve been $2 a day. So at the end of the month at my, uh, in the Monday, I might be $50. Something like that. I think we made, we averaged about $50 a book. So we then left $50 a month. You can buy different items that you like, or that you want from the commissary here. Right? But girl got, he helped. Some guys get the GED.
And a lot of guy was very appreciative of that and was very patient with the guys. And he worked very closely in intently with the guys that they want to achieve something. They really want to get a GED. He may show that happen. So we appreciate him for that. Oh, also one day while I was working in the cafeteria, you have came by to tell me that he said, uh, I had a visitor visitor today and they told me to tell you how he said, I want to, I want you to miss the guys that watch and listen. Once you realize that he was really concerned about you and you really want to make sure that you’re doing good, that your family is doing okay. Things are all right. I say, okay, well, what is it you say? Well, judge John greeter, he came visited me and I just looked at him with a stare.
And did everybody know that judge John Brady is the one who sends me to prison. So of course I wouldn’t happen to hear his name. That effect didn’t want to hear his name. Didn’t care to hear his name. Of course I feel differently now though, he’s gone. He passed on. And uh, I learned to respect them, but I looked at him like, okay, you know, you gotta be kidding me. You think I want to hear about judge Brady’s or he’s he attempt to explain to me that he was really concerned about you. He really want to know about your wellbeing. And I looked at him, I said, girl, I feel the way about judge Brady. As you feel about jurors, Paula Zola. So he looked at me and grant, I could walked away. Did anybody know [inaudible] is the one who sent us him. So he understood that perspective.
But of course we know we grew to respect the me and the judge. And there’s some, a lot of, some of those load out prosecutors for what they do, but we knew they they’re doing their jobs to the part where they’ll do anything to make sure that, that you go do that. That’d be stopped somewhere. But also I was saying about a job that they make sure that everybody, the prison works. So they know the system knows that you’ve got to keep grown men and women busy. You got to keep them active. You wouldn’t pay them $50 a month in prison to do a job. I came to do the same on the outside. Why can’t we create jobs for these young people to keep them busy out of trouble? Because you got money to pay prisoners, prisoners to, we used to do things. Why can’t you pay these young men and women right now, money to help them and take care of themselves or what a trade or learn something.
So, cause you know, the importance of giving people jobs as just another tidbit for me from AOD also one day I was talking to gov, I said goodbye. I said, uh, I want them shoes. You get, and I want that cap. You got on your head. He said, well, would you expect me just to give it to you? I said, yes, he would do. He said, well, no, I need my shoes again. This is all I have. I say, what happens if I buy you another solution to use and a cap, would you sign those over to me? And would you sign that capital? Then if you go, go do that as you would. And we, I guess, you know, the conversation was coming up in a few days, compensated where you went to spend money with the federal prison. So I went and bought him some shoes, some new tennis shoes, I guess that was eight.
I don’t remember what eight, eight and a half. And I brought him. So I bought him a new cap. So when I bought the shoes too, he was shocked. I think the shoes, that time was the new balance. That was the name of new balance. Pay $50 for those shoes in the federal prison. He had a few dollars for that cap. I said, where did he go? He’s all yours. He said, give him my new shoes, a new cap. We good to go. So he took the new shoes, the new cap, and he signed his over to me. He put his, uh, I said, girl, I’m going to put your prison number on there. I want to point you to put the year on there and I want you to sign it. I think it was one of the things I’m about to request it.
So if anybody looking for some shoes, tennis shoes and a cap from the, from the federal prison, they, I got to go personally side. It turned them over to me for a small Christ. It’s a girl. I appreciate that. You left some small memories that I can retain maintain in half. So we’d like to say thank you to governor Edwin Edwards. You know, we going to be, he can be having services in the next day or two, and you’re going to be lining my in state at the Louisiana state Capitol in a [inaudible] though, I believe. And now we’ll be one of the ones to visit, pay my respect to him, his lovely wife, treater, who he met, why Edna federal prison. Matter of fact, uh, when she first tapped and showed up, we thought that was the daughter cell. We didn’t know gov had a daughter, pretty new young girl come to visit a new buddy, his son, Steven.
But I didn’t know. I knew he had an older daughter, but I knew we never knew he had a younger daughter. Then we find out that, oh no, she wrote gov until gov. She like to come and visit with it’s like they come and see him in prison. So he, she, she started showing up on a regular basis, but I’m telling you, he smiled from ear to ear, ear to ear. Every time she showed up and guess what the rest of us did too. It was a beautiful, it was a pleasure to see a beautiful young lady show up at a federal prison. All there were quite a few came through there, but it was a pleasure to Cedar and support. And Trina, we thank you for supporting him in his, in his last days, stand by his side. And even I heard he was in the wheelchair and I’m just so hurt.
Disappointed it, he and I didn’t get a chance to do a podcast. Cause I’m telling you it would have been a doozy. It had been, it had been an exciting one. And we could have been talking about the, uh, the times of the federal prison, even the time, uh, you know, in the prison. When you want to take a picture, you have to make a request to take pictures in a federal prison. And I had wanted to take a picture with a Regev in a federal prison. Well, you know, it’s a little harder to do that. And then you can take a picture with all your other prison partners, but it’s harder to take pictures with, you know, big name people. And as I, as girl, I was a girl, I said, would you take a picture with me? Uh, for keepsake? He said, oh sure.
So I said, well, you know, I need to get the other governor. You want me to see, uh, Siegelman to take a picture with me and my other friend, Roscoe Nixon, the state representative state Senator out of Memphis, Tennessee. So w when I went to make the request, it took them about a month or two before you honored that request, what? They let us take a picture together and I have to pitch it, but I did not get governor, uh, did not have him decide a particular. They didn’t turn a picture over to me until a few days before I got ready to leave to come back home. I don’t know why, but they would not let me have the pictures until months later. But I do have the pictures of me, governor, governor Siegelman, and state representatives. They sent it to Mr. Roscoe Dickson out of Memphis, Tennessee.
So I do have a wonderful keepsake from the days of, uh, of our, what we call it when we went abroad to OBL Louisiana. So grandma, thank you for that picture. I’m just so sorry. We didn’t get a chance to have this conversation together to reminisce, to go down memory lane, to share these, uh, these wonderful times and, uh, in the prison, although it was a difficult time, but we made it through and I asked you several days a time, did that cause you was making 80 and actually where you think he was gonna make it outta here, you looked at me, looked me dead. Sure. I will. And you did that all. Did you make it out? You made it out and you stood the course. So we going to miss you, but we know you served your time. You served the well, we thank you, God, we thank you universe for sending a man like you, who care, who show so much love and respect to others that in this day and time that people still can tip the head and hopefully the law I can see where the, my good and faithful servant.
So you’re going on to your next dimension of what we call the spiritual life. Rest in peace though, in me, it’d be
Edwin Edwards (1927–2021), four-term Louisiana governor
By Linnea Crowther July 13, 2021
Edwin Edwards was the Democratic governor of Louisiana for four terms in the 1970s, ‘80s, and ‘90s.
Died: July 12, 2021
Details of death: Died at his home in Gonzales, Louisiana of respiratory problems at the age of 93.
After serving in the U.S. Navy Air Corps during World War II, Edwards became a lawyer and began serving on the city council in Crowley, Louisiana. He served briefly in the Louisiana Senate before being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served from 1965 to 1972. In 1972, Edwards rose to the top of a crowded field of Democrats to win election as Louisiana’s governor. Once in office, he quickly distinguished himself by overhauling Louisiana’s election procedure and calling for a constitutional convention to rewrite the state’s constitution.
Edwards served two terms, the limit for consecutive terms in Louisiana, before stepping down in 1980. He ran again one term later and served as governor from 1984 to 1988, though he lost to Buddy Roemer (1943–2021) in the 1988 election. Edwards came back and won a final term as he ran against David Duke, serving again as governor from 1992 to 1996. He was one of only a handful of U.S. governors who have served four or more terms, boosted in part by the sense of humor that made him a popular candidate and governor.
Scandal and prison sentence
Though Edwards had populist appeal and was liked by many, his terms in office were plagued by scandals that eventually caught up with him. He was first indicted in 1985, for accepting payoffs from hospitals, though he was ultimately acquitted. Edwards went to court again in 2000 accused of bribery, extortion, and money laundering. This time, he was convicted. Edwards served eight years in federal prison, working as the prison’s librarian when he was incarcerated at Oakdale Federal Correctional Institute. He was released in 2011. In 2014, Edwards ran again for the U.S. House of Representatives, though he lost with only 38 percent of the vote.
Edwards on his proudest achievement
“I’m the only person who’s ever been elected governor of Louisiana four times. That’s a great achievement and makes me very proud, considering my humble beginnings. Even when I was in prison and since then, repeated polls have shown me and continue to show me as the most popular former governor, and I’m very, very honored by that.” —from a 2017 interview with Ellen Byron