Louisiana officials comment on the passing of former Gov. Buddy Roemer

Charles “Buddy” Roemer

BATON ROUGE (WGNO) — Charles “Buddy” Roemer III, a one-term Louisiana governor and former U.S. congressman died earlier this morning at the age of 77.

His son, Chas Roemer, told the Associated Press the former governor died peacefully at his home in Baton Rouge after a long battle with diabetes. He was surrounded by family, Chas Roemer said.

Since the announcement early Monday morning, Louisiana officials and organizations have provided an outpouring of praise and support.

Funeral arrangement details will be released at a later date. 

The following statement is from the Roemer family regarding the death of former governor and congressman Charles Elson “Buddy” Roemer III.

“Surrounded by family, Buddy peacefully passed away early this morning, following a recent illness. Buddy was our loving and supportive husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, mentor and friend. His charismatic presence captured the attention of audiences within moments, a talent he put to work battling corruption and waste in government, drawing attention to opportunities to improve our educational system, and building support for those in need. Buddy positively impacted all who crossed his path by generously sharing his knowledge, resources, and time, regardless of station in life. His authenticity gave everyone a feeling of friendship and encouragement. We are saddened by his passing but find comfort in knowing he is eternally rejoicing in the presence of our heavenly Father. We also celebrate the life he lived and the legacy he leaves behind.”

Gov. John Bel Edwards issued the following statement on the death of former Gov. Charles Elson “Buddy” Roemer III who served as Louisiana’s 52nd governor from 1988-1992.

“From the fields of Scopena to the halls of Congress and then the Governor’s Mansion, Buddy Roemer proudly represented the state he so dearly loved. His astute intellect led him to enter Harvard at the young age of 16, but he still returned to Louisiana, driven by a desire to serve. I am especially grateful for the balanced, pragmatic approach he took as governor during a turbulent time for our state’s budget. I hope that we will all carry on his legacy by espousing his positive, passionate approach to public service. Donna and I ask that you join your prayers to ours in praying for Gov. Roemer’s family and friends during this difficult time.” 

Gov. Edwards has ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff in honor of Gov. Roemer’s life and legacy on May 17, 2021, the day of his interment.

U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) released the following statement on the passing of former Louisiana Governor Buddy Roemer:

“Buddy’s election as governor signaled a turning point in Louisiana’s history. He loved Louisiana, contributing to it through the public and private sector. He leaves a great legacy. My condolences to his family.”

Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), released the following statement upon the passing of Gov. Buddy Roemer.

“Louisiana weeps. Buddy was one of the most interesting people I have ever met. He was immeasurably talented. All he ever wanted to do was make Louisiana better, and he did. That meant making the right people mad, but he understood that. When I count my blessings, I count Buddy twice.

“More than anything, Buddy loved his family. Becky and I are honored to count his family and loved ones as our friends. We are so sad to lose this Louisiana warrior, and we are praying for everyone who was blessed to know and love him.”

House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) released the following statement on the passing of former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer:

“Buddy Roemer worked hard to improve the lives of all Louisiana families during his time in Congress and throughout his tenure as Governor of our great state. Buddy wasn’t afraid to speak his mind, and his education reforms helped increase teacher pay and improve standards in the classroom. Jennifer and I mourn his passing, and our prayers are with his family during this difficult time.”

LABI President and CEO Stephen Waguespack released the following statement on the passing of former Governor Buddy Roemer:

“Buddy Roemer dedicated his life’s work to building a better Louisiana and led the charge for reform in state government. His passion and hard work will endure through the decades, and his accomplishments in both politics and business stand as a testament to his legacy. The thoughts and prayers of our entire organization and all of LABI’s members are with his family during this time.”

NOLA Public Schools

NOLA-PS is saddened by the passing of former U.S. Representative and Louisiana Governor Buddy Roemer.  Governor Roemer will be remembered for his great contributions to our state and his work to lift up so many teachers and the work they did and do every day. In the late 1980s, he won legislative approval to raise teacher pay. He also helped Louisiana out of a financial crisis, and he championed environmental policies to help protect our state from oil and gas pollution.

“Governor Roemer was a visionary who wanted to make Louisiana better,” said NOLA-PS Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends. May he rest in peace.”

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