Dig Baton Rouge

Louie’s Cafe starts fund for slain worker

Louie’s Cafe near LSU created a fund this weekend to help the family of a longtime worker who was shot and killed last week.

Donald Smart, 49, was shot and killed while walking to work at the 24-hour diner on Sept. 14 according to The Advocate. Police said Smart’s death was also linked to a second shooting earlier that week, and that the crimes could be racially motivated.

Baton Rouge Police detained a person of interest in the shootings, 23-year-old Kenneth Gleason, on Saturday. He was released Monday on bail for unrelated drug charges, but a police spokesperson said he remains a person of interest in the killings.

Fred Simonson, the general manager at Louie’s, told The Advocate that Smart had washed dishes for them going on 20 years. He was known for his diligence and good attitude, even during the hairiest nights and mornings keeping up with the LSU diner crowd.

“What Donald means to me as a person and Louie’s as an institution is not quantifiable,” Simonson told the Advocate’s Grace Toohey. “It’s not measurable. .. Hopefully they can get some justice, some closure.”

You can donate to the Donald Smart Memorial Fund here.

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