Longtime conservative talk radio host Phil Valentine, who spent much of the pandemic mocking the importance of COVID-19 vaccines on his show and spreading doubt as to whether they are safe, has died after a long bout with the virus. The host had been in the hospital since July, and his death was announced Saturday by SuperTalk 99.7 WTN. He was 61 and had been a fixture on Nashville radio for more than 20 years.
"We are extremely saddened to report that our host and friend Phil Valentine has passed away," reads a Facebook post from the station. "Please keep the Valentine family in your thoughts and prayers."
Shortly after he was hospitalized, Valentine's family release a statement saying that "Phil would like for his listeners to know that while he has never been an 'anti-vaxer' he regrets not being more vehemently 'Pro-Vaccine.'"
The available vaccines have proven to be safe and remarkably effective, yet only 41 percent of Tennesseans are fully vaccinated.
The last Facebook post on Valentine's account before his hospitalization was a link to a Daily Caller story about Johnson and Johnson's decision to pull several sunscreens due to concerns about cancer-causing chemicals.
"Ah, but I'm sure their vaccine is perfectly safe," Valentine wrote. "Don't worry about it."