About three hundred people attended the home going services for former congressman Joe D. Waggonner including some noted politicians. They all came to remember and say good bye to a man they say did a lot for north west Louisiana.
Waggonner began his career as a congressman in 1961, and after nine terms he left the office but not until helping north west Louisiana get a new interstate I-49, a GM plant, and more funding for Barksdale air force base.
Billy Montgomery, a former representative says "He was involved in the whole process in Washington and I admired him for that." Lo Walker, Bossier City Mayor, remembers Waggonner as someone who he could talk to. "Right on up until the very last days he would call me about cyberspace and suggest things it was always good advice and we followed his advice."
In Bossier City the regularly scheduled commission meeting was cancelled. The flags at Shreveport's city hall were at half staff. throughout his career, Waggonner made friends with presidents, he was a confidant of Richard Nixon, and also worked with president Ronald Regan on social security reforms. These key roles in leadership is what many are still talking about. Rep. Jim McCreary says, "He was always more than willing to sit down with me. Talk about his perspective of almost 18 years in a Congress what he thought about a given situation I was dealing with."
Buddy Roemer, Former La Governor, says "He reminded me of a lesson that my parents taught me that it's not Democrat or Republican it's American and we ought to work together. He was a great congressman."
Waggonner served in the Navy and fought in World War II and the Korean war. He is survived by his wife, two kids, and three grand kids. He will be laid to rest in Plain Dealing which is where he is from with full military honors.