Westboro Baptist Church plans to protest Dunn's funeral
"Jackass" star Ryan Dunn, 34, famous for his pranks and dangerous stunts, died in a car wreck in Pennsylvania on Monday.
June 22nd, 2011
05:40 PM ET

Westboro Baptist Church plans to protest Dunn's funeral

A controversial church in Topeka, Kansas, plans to send parishioners to Pennsylvania to protest the funeral of “Jackass” star Ryan Dunn, the congregation announced in a press release.

Westboro Baptist Church "will picket any public memorial/funeral held for Dunn, warning all not to make a mock of sin, & to fear and obey God!” the release said.

Westboro was started by the Rev. Fred Phelps in 1955. The church's parishioners, made up mostly of Phelps relatives, stage protests with signs that say such things as "God Hates Fags" and "Thank God for dead soldiers."

The funeral director for DellaVecchia, Reilly, Smith & Boyd Funeral Home in West Chester said Wednesday afternoon that a family-only private memorial for Dunn was in progress - and there was no problem.

Because it was a private memorial, Joseph DellaVecchia said, he didn't expect any disturbances, although he'd heard of Westboro's plans.

“We can’t stop someone from coming to a public funeral, but this is private, and the police have everything under control,” DellaVecchia said.

A public funeral is planned for later in the week.

“Our department recognizes that we have an ethical and legal imperative to uphold civil rights of those who choose to lawfully assemble to protest but also of family members mourning at a funeral," West Chester Police Chief Scott Bohn said Wednesday.

Dunn was drunk and driving up to 140 mph when his 2007 Porsche 911 GT3 crashed and caught fire on a Pennsylvania highway Monday, police said Wednesday.

The red-bearded Dunn, 34, was famous for his pranks and dangerous stunts on the MTV show, which evolved into a successful film franchise.

Westboro protesters, known for picketing the funerals of U.S. soldiers, have recently been met with counter-protesters at funerals across the nation.

At Arlington National Cemetery in Washington last month, counter-protesters, some claiming to be from the Ku Klux Klan, squared off against Westboro Baptist members.

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Filed under: Pennsylvania • Protest • U.S.
soundoff (798 Responses)
  1. Michael

    Talk about mixed feelings. Dunn was responsible for taking reckless idiocy to new heights of popularity, and died as stupidly as he appeared to live. A loathsome person. On the other hand, the WBC inbred zombies are just plain disgusting. It seems fitting somehow that they should all end up in the same place at the same time – too bad they weren't protesting at the exact place and time Dunn crashed; that would have been perfect.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:11 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Gerald Spencer

    Two needless deaths, both sad, I don't like the loss of young unfulfilled lives, no matter the reason. To have supposed people of religion to picket the last bit of dignity these souls have speaks volumes of their ilk; this makes no sense.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:11 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Corbijn

    If I was part of the cast, I would bring 21 trebuchet's to catapult wasp nests and manure at the protesters then film it as a remembrance to a good friend.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mick

      Well said...

      June 22, 2011 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Over It

    A life is a life no matter who. It bugs me that people tend to forget that celebrities are people with families. Just because they live their lives in the public eye does not mean we can pick and pick and pick at them.

    What these people are doing is the complete opposite of what a Christian is suppose to be.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Brown

    Let's not forget this is a person who went on Minute to Win It with Steve-O two weeks ago to raise money for children with Down's Syndrome. Yeah, sounds like a total D-bag to me.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • @thejimbojim

      Dunn spent a lot of time volunteering and helping kids with special needs, he also was usually the guy that would take someones keys because they were too drunk.

      June 22, 2011 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
  6. @thejimbojim

    This might be the protest where Phelps gets his. There will be a lot of people attending that I don't think will care much about picking up criminal charges.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
  7. mtnmedic

    WBC tards are at it again. I could care less about Dunn but those guys are just a huge steaming pile.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bill-O

    I hope Steve-O, Bam and Co. beat the shat out of these fools! And film it of course!

    June 22, 2011 at 7:15 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Raevyn

    Perfect. These idiots have now thrown down the gauntlet for this man's legions of fans (also idiots), so they can go after them. It's win-win.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:15 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Thank God I am a Democrat

    I wish they were coming to the Chicago area. I want to get face to face with these POS!

    June 22, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Report abuse |
  11. SC

    Perhaps if the media never said the name of this "church" or gave them any publicity it would be best. Let the local people block their view to the funerals and don't give them anymore media coverage. If they never got attention, they wouldn't matter.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Cilla

    Anyone realize that the counter-protestors also included KKK members?Personally I just think these protestors & counter-protestors are just a distraction from the New Great Depression and WW3(aka Arab Spring).It's meant to divide us through race,income,religion,so we won't unite to bring dwn this gov. which now looks dwn upon the American flag,and omits "under God,indivisible" from our pledge on national TV.For what? To prove that we are NOT a nation under God anymore,and that we are completely DIVISIBLE!Wake up people!ORDER out of CHAOS is what they believe.They as in the Globalist Occultic Elite!
    Peace be with you all..

    June 22, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Report abuse |
  13. mtnmedic

    I say whenever anyone from WBC dies and has a funeral, we all gather 'round to protest, make noise, upset the families and such. Give them a taste of their own medicine.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
  14. zoundsman

    "God hates those who claim God hates--- and fills in the blanks themselves."
    Nut patrol casting the net for more lawsuit bucks and demented attention gathering.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
  15. The Dude

    Dunn was a piece of SHEET as proven by his desire to endanger others with his stupidity.

    This may be the only protest that Westboro makes that no one will care about, at least they shouldn't.

    June 22, 2011 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
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