MINDEN — Longtime Mayor Bill Robertson has died while rehabbing from major back surgery performed in April.
He was 75.
Robertson’s daughter, Brenda Weeks, confirmed her father died Thursday at Promise Hospital of Louisiana in Bossier City.
An infection in his hip from a previous surgery also complicated his recovery but Weeks said his death still came as a shock.
“He was there for wound care and rehab,” Weeks said of her father Friday in a telephone interview. “We weren’t expecting this. He had been doing better. It’s been an emotional couple of days.”
Robertson began serving as mayor on Jan. 1, 1991. The Democrat was elected to his sixth term in October 2010.
“He loved the city of Minden and working for the people of Minden,” Weeks said.
Robertson served the public nearly 40 years, beginning in 1975 on the city council. He also served on the Webster Parish Police Jury for 11 years, the last seven as president.
Charlie Walker, who has served as the District 12 police juror since 1992, said he was proud to call Robertson a friend and mentor.
“He gave me a lot of good advice on the parish since he was on the police jury before me,” Walker said.
“Bill Robertson was a good man. He was good for Webster Parish, not just Minden.”
“If my dad had a love affair, it was with Minden,” said his son, Kyle Robertson.
Robertson also managed Talbot’s shoe department from 1959-61 and Talbot’s Shoe Center in Minden from 1961-66. He owned Robertson’s Shoes from 1966-79, opening a location in Homer and one in Shreveport. He also opened The Purple Hippopotamus and The Shoe Box in Minden.
Mayor Pro Tem Joe Cornelius Sr. said he will continue to fill the mayor’s position until a special election is called.
“I will be leading the next council meeting and will likely hold the position of mayor for at least the next 20 days, unless the council decides to appoint someone else,” he said.
Robertson is survived by his wife of 55 years, Barbara Kimmer Robertson, three children, four granddaughters and a great-grandson.
Funeral services are 2 p.m. Sunday at First Baptist Church in Minden.
Burial will follow at Gardens of Memory under the direction of Hillcrest Funeral Home.