Francis G. Weller, retired attorney, World War II veteran, former newsman, and former Assistant United States Attorney, died at his home in New Orleans on April 5, 2018, at age 95. Mr. Weller was born in Fond du Lac, WI, on August 9, 1922, the son of Garald P. Weller and Gladys Mae Willett. He came to Louisiana in the 32nd Division of the National Guard in October, l940, and was stationed in Alexandria and New Orleans before transferring to the U.S. Army Air Corps, where he served as a radio operator and gunner on B-24 bombers with the 380th Bomb Group, Fifth Air Force, in New Guinea, the Philippines, and Okinawa. His awards included the Air Medal and the Asiatic-Pacific Theater Ribbon with seven bronze stars.
After discharge from service in 1945, Mr. Weller graduated from the University of Wisconsin School of Journalism, and worked for newspapers in Lake Charles, LA and in southern Illinois. He returned to military service for a year when the Korean war broke out. In 1952, he joined the New Orleans States, where he worked as a general assignment/police reporter and editorial writer while attending night classes at Loyola University School of Law. At this time, he joined the civil rights group The Commission on Human Rights of The Catholic Committee of the South, the members of which included prominent activist attorney A.P. Tureaud and Ernest “Dutch” Morial, later New Orleans mayor.
Following admission to the bar in 1958, Mr. Weller served as law clerk to U.S. District Judge J. Skelly Wright during the desegregation of Louisiana’s public schools, following which he became an assistant U.S. Attorney. He entered the private practice of law with the firm of Deutsch, Kerrigan & Stiles in 1961, continued in solo practice starting in 1998, and retired in 2004. He was a parishioner of St. Pius X Church, and was a member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, and the New Orleans Shakespeare Society.
He was preceded in death by his loving wife Carole, his twin brother Frederick, his sister Lois Becksfort, and his brother Willet Patrick Weller. He is survived by his three sons, Franz, Frederick, and Garald; five grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend the Funeral Mass at St. Pius X Catholic Church, 6666 Spanish Fort Blvd., New Orleans, LA 70124 on Tuesday, April 10, 2018 at 11:00 AM. Visitation will begin at 9:00 AM. Burial services at Greenwood Cemetery.