Beloved S. Fla radio host Dick Farrel dies from Covid complications; tells friends he was wrong about the jab

Former South Florida talk show host Dick Farrel died last week after contracting COVID-19, his untimely death being just one more American fatality that lies at the doorstep of Beijing, China. One of many.

An unabashed speaker of the truth as he saw it, Farrel was one of a precious few on the right willing to boldly and unapologetically take the fight to the left. Motivated by love of country, he was no less enthusiastic about going out on a limb to share his opinion as the most committed on the left.

“Dick Farrel was a fearless conservative radio host who took on anybody and everything,” said BizPac Review founder Jack Furnari. “Dick died as he lived, without fear. Dick battled the left for many years, and unlike many in politics, he was a happy warrior who was friends with people of all kinds.”

A transplant from Queens, New York, he eventually moved to South Florida, and not surprisingly, the outspoken conservative was an avid supporter of former President Donald Trump.

Farrel’s passing drew more media attention than it would have otherwise, based on something he did before dying, which was to encourage others to get vaccinated.

 

You see, Farrel was an “anti-vaxxer,” as some in the media dubbed him, and a fierce critic of Dr. Anthony Fauci, whom he called a “power-tripping lying freak.” With all the concerns about the experimental vaccine being administered via an FDA emergency use authorization, Farrel cautioned people about getting the vaccine but reportedly changed his views after falling ill.

With the media whipping the public into a frenzy to get vaccinated amid a surge of the delta variant of the coronavirus, his death is being held up as motivation for people to get the shot. The irony here is that most on the right encourage people to make their own choices when it comes to the experimental vaccine, and do not begrudge anybody who decides to accept the risks and get it done.

His life partner of many years, Kittie Farley, said Farrel “fought like a tiger.”

“Please don’t put off getting attention for this illness. Yes, for some it has minimal effects, but others it is deadly,” she wrote on Facebook. “We will always love Dick Farrel, always appreciate his spirit, and miss him greatly. He was known as the other Rush Limbaugh. With a heavy heart, I can only say this was so unexpected. He will be missed.”

Amy Leigh Hair, a close friend, shared on Facebook that she decided to get vaccinated because of Farrel — that he cared enough to help others, even as he faced a daunting challenge of his own would come as no surprise to those who knew him.

“COVID took one of my best friends! RIP Dick Farrel,” Hair wrote on Facebook. “He is the reason I took the shot. He texted me and told me to ‘Get it!’ He told me this virus is no joke and he said, ‘I wish I had gotten it!'”

“I was one of the people like him who didn’t trust the vaccine,” Hair told WPTV. “I trusted my immune system. I just became more afraid of getting COVID-19 than I was of any possible side effects of the vaccine. I’m glad I got vaccinated.”

His wealth of friends included those across the aisle, as seen in remarks from former 98.7 The Gater radio personality Taylor Morgan shared with the NBC affiliate.

“While we were polar opposites politically, we were still friends,” he said. “We go back more than 20 years. Dick was a big fan of my father, Jerry Williams, a 50-year radio broadcasting veteran. Because of that, we became friends. He was always very kind to me and always had a great story to tell. This makes me so sad.”

Farrel worked at a number of prominent Florida radio stations, including CBS Radio West Palm Beach. Lee Strasser, a former market general manager there who hired him in the 1990s, shared fond memories of him.

“Dick was flamboyant, outrageous at times, and willing to take on any and all comers. He loved to engage with local politicians and pulled no punches,” Strasser told WPTV. “Was he right all the time? No… But he was ‘RIGHT’ all the time, especially if you asked him. Did he stay out of trouble? Not always.”

“Was he great with clients? Yes. Was he a pleasure in the building? Absolutely. Was he loyal? Unquestionably! Was he skilled? Yessir! His passing is a big loss. He was a kind-hearted person with a load of passion, and his memory will stand the test of time. We have all lost a friend in Farrel,” he continued.

Tom Tillison

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