Gus Weill, the famed Louisiana playwright and political consultant who died early this morning at the age of 85, is being remembered for his wide-ranging accomplishments and his kind demeanor.
“He lived an enormous life that would probably be worth three or four lives of a regular human,” says Jim Engster, a local journalist and talk radio host. “He will be remembered as someone who was a great ambassador for our state and his kindness exceeded his talent, which was substantial.”
Born in Lafayette in 1933, Weill lived several professional lives—serving as a U.S. Army Counterintelligence Special Agent in Germany in the 1950s, working as a screenwriter and serving numerous Louisiana governors, beginning with John McKeithen. He even helped President John Kennedy carry Louisiana, Engster says.
Weill also served as the long-time host of the “Louisiana Legends” series on Louisiana Public Broadcasting and penned several novels. He became the go-to person for many wanting to get elected in Louisiana, says Engster, who last spoke with Weill about a month ago.
“I don’t know anybody who had the variety of experience that he did and was knowledgeable of so many significant areas.”