Pastor Fred Phelps Sr., founding member of the controversial Westboro Baptist Church, has died aged 84.
It was reported by family member Timothy Phelps that the former head of the WBC died shortly before midnight on Wednesday March 19.
Nathan Phelps, the pastor’s estranged son, made a statement about his father’s declining health on his Facebook page last weekend. In the post, he also claimed that his father had been excommunicated from the church last year. Westboro officials have refused to comment.
“I’ve learned that my father, Fred Phelps, Sr., pastor of the ‘God Hates Fags’ Westboro Baptist Church, was ex-communicated from the ‘church’ back in August of 2013. He is now on the edge of death at Midland Hospice house in Topeka, Kansas,” wrote Nathan Phelps.
“I’m not sure how I feel about this. Terribly ironic that his devotion to his god ends this way. Destroyed by the monster he made.
He added, “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 good-byes.”
Fred Phelps Sr. headed the notoriously anti-gay group from it’s first meeting in 1955, up to his excommunication in 2013.
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