Dispatches > The Buzz

The Buzz

"The Buzz" Continued...

Issue: "The yoot vote," Aug. 4, 2007

"Wayne Downing was a national treasure," said Boykin. "He was committed to his country, from training young cadets at West Point all the way up to supporting and advising the president. The country has lost a great patriot, and we're all going to feel it."

Televangelista

Tamara "Tammy" Faye Bakker Messner, 65, gospel singer and entertainer whose garish style and makeup marked her as the face of televangelism, died July 20 at her home near Kansas City, Mo. Messner co-hosted with former husband Jim Bakker the popular PTL Club Christian television show in the 1970s and 1980s. She died of colon and lung cancer.

The Bakkers' Charlotte-based PTL ministry and its $200 million Heritage USA resort and theme park collapsed in the late 1980s. Jim Bakker resigned in 1987 following a sex scandal. He was convicted of fraud in 1989 for selling Heritage timeshares in nonexistent space. Mrs. Bakker wasn't charged. The couple divorced in 1992, and Mrs. Bakker married Roe Messner, a former ministry business associate, the following year. In recent years, she championed AIDS victims and opposed discrimination against gays, appearing at Gay Pride events.

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