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Westboro Baptist Church to Picket Joe Paterno's Funeral

Westboro Baptist Church to Picket Joe Paterno's Funeral

"He's in hell. Don't partake of your neighbor's sin!"

The near-universally hated Westboro Baptist Church has announced via Twitter that they plan to picket the funeral of legendary, yet publicly tarnished, former Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno.

The pseudo church organization is known for their extremely hateful views and disruptive protests at somber institutions and events such as funerals for American soldiers killed in the Middle East, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, and Papal visits.

The 85-year-old Paterno was suffering from lung cancer and passed away Sunday, following months of public criticism for not doing more than his legal obligations when told of alleged sexual abuse conducted by his former Defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky. Only days after the story broke and under intense media pressure, Paterno was fired following 46 years of service and donating over $4 million dollars to the university throughout his career.

"Joe Paterno is dead. WBC will picket his funeral," wrote Margie Phelps, daughter of Westboro's leader, Pastor Fred Phelps. "He's in hell. Don't partake of your neighbor's sin!"

Supporters have gathered at Penn State around the bronze statue of their former football coach since the news spread Sunday morning and USA Today reports that throughout the day, much of the coaching world, a legion of former players and even a former U.S.president weighed in.

"I was deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Joe Paterno," said former President George H.W. Bush in a statement. "He was an outstanding American who was respected not only on the field of play but in life generally -- and he was, without a doubt, a true icon in the world of sports. I was proud that he was a friend of mine. Barbara and I send our condolences to his devoted wife Suzanne and to his wonderful family."

ESPN reports that a private funeral for Paterno will be held Wednesday, and his family has scheduled three days of public memorial events this week.

Thousands attended a candlelight vigil for Paterno in front of Penn State's Old Main Sunday night.

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