Funeral set Tuesday for Gus Mijalis

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Funeral services for Shreveport businessman Gus Mijalis, 84, will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 6 at St George Greek Orthodox Church, 1719 Creswell Ave.

Mijalis’ who worked at his family’s business, Farmer’s Seafood in Shreveport, died Tuesday night at University Health Hospital. 

A close friend of Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards for many years, Mijalis was considered one of Louisiana’s most powerful men during the governor’s four terms.

In the 1980, he was indicted along with the then popular governor and several others in a nursing home scam. Their first trial ended with a hung jury in December 1985. The second trial, held in 1986, resulted in not-guilty verdicts all ‘round. 

But that wasn’t the end of Mijalis’ troubles – he spent 20 months in prison in the 1990s after being convicted of bank fraud.

In the leadup to the casinos coming to Bossier City however, Mijalis often could be seen leaning against a wall in the Bossier City Council’s chambers during public hearings.

After Mijalis’ release from prison, Edwards was convicted of extorting money from companies applying for casino licenses during his last term in office. He was released in January 2011 after serving eight years in federal prison, and resumed his close friendship with Mijalis.

Mijalis suffered from heart disease for many years, and around the time former Vice President Dick Cheney was connected to an artificial heart, the same fate befell Mijalis. But Mijalis took it in good spirits and continued to go to work at Farmer’s Market until just weeks before his final illness.

Visitation is scheduled for 4 to 7 p.m. Monday, March 5, at the Rose-Neath Funeral Home, 1815 Marshall St., with a short service afterward that is open to the public.