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Fred Phelps, founder of Westboro Baptist Church, dies at 84

By Julianne Mosher,

Founder of The Westboro Baptist Church, Fred Phelps, has died at the age of 84.

According to his son, Timothy Phelps, the leader of the controversial protestors died late Wednesday night due to health conditions related to old age, WIBW reports.

This comes just days after his estranged son, Nate Phelps, announced that his father was “on the edge of death.”

On Sunday, he posted that he feels bad for all the pain the “pastor of the ‘God Hate Fags’” campaign caused.

“I feel sad for all the hurt he’s caused so many. I feel sad for those who will lose the grandfather and father they loved. And I’m bitterly angry that my family is blocking the family members who left from seeing him and saying their goodbyes,” he wrote.

Fred Phelps was an award winning civil rights attorney and created the Westboro Baptist Church in 1955 in Topeka, KA, The Daily Mail reports. The group came into the public eye in the 1990’s when they picketed the funeral of Matthew Shepard, an openly gay student at the University of Wyoming, who was tortured and left to die.

Since then, the organization is known for protesting gay marriages, funerals of soldiers and even the deaths of children.

By Mark Schierbecker (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

 

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