La. man gets final request, to be buried in Budweiser casket

Published: Sep. 6, 2012 at 9:15 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 10, 2012 at 2:17 PM CDT
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MARINGOUIN, LA (WAFB) - The Junior Mart in Maringouin sees a steady line of customers everyday.

"We sell a lot of beer in this town. It's amazing," said one of the clerks at the store. Workers say a lot of those who come in reach for one of the brown bottles, in the beer case. "He would come into the store, buy his beer and cigarettes and that's it." The store was pretty much a daily stop for one man in particular.

"Bin Laden," the clerk said. "I know I've heard they call him that."

"That's Leon," said Jackie Wesley.

Leon Wesley got that nickname because of his long beard. But family say he's nothing like America's former number one enemy.

"He stood six feet seven and a half inches tall. He was a comedian, loved to make you laugh all the time," said Wesley, Leon's younger sister. "He would always put his foot behind his head and we were always so afraid it would get stuck and we'd have to call the paramedics to take it down."

Jackie says her brother was rarely without his red cup.

Her brother died Sunday, after battling prostate cancer. But his sister, who runs a funeral home in Maringouin, promised to honor his dying wish.

"When they hear about the casket, they going to be curious to come see about that," she said.

Leon's casket was specially ordered to fit his long frame and covered with the log of his well known drink of choice, Budweiser beer.

Jackie says her brothers request never seemed odd because she's been asked to honor similar wishes before, from other families.

"One family years ago wanted their father in a bed. So we brought in a bed, with his pajamas and robe on. With a Butterfinger in his hands," Wesley said.

Now she says her brothers wish is also fulfilled.

The family also says Leon will be buried in that casket, holding a Budweiser. They're expecting a crowded church at his funeral on Saturday, in Maringouin, La.

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