FRANKLIN, Tennessee (WKRN) – The sister of conservative radio talk show host Phil Valentine wants her brother to be remembered as a “loving father” and loving husband who has made her proud of all of his successes.
The 61-year-old host of the Phil Valentine Show on SuperTalk 99.7 WTN from Nashville died Saturday afternoon following a lengthy battle with COVID-19 that left him hospitalized and on a ventilator for weeks.
“We were a team and I can’t believe you left,” Beth Valentine Dollar wrote on Facebook.
Valentine Dollar allowed News 2 to share the letter and said she wrote it to her brother after learning of his death.
“I love you so much,” she explained. “You can see mom before me, so please catch her.” Tell dad that we miss him every day too. Give them both a big hug for me.
Valentine, an outspoken conservative talk show host known throughout Tennessee and the country, confirmed on his Facebook page on July 11 that he had tested positive for COVID.
His family revealed on July 22 that he was “in very serious condition” at a Nashville area hospital and was suffering from “Covid pneumonia,” along with other side effects of the virus. A few days later, relatives said Valentine had been placed on a ventilator.
During a live broadcast at 4:15 p.m. Saturday, several colleagues and close friends of Valentine announced that the 61-year-old had died earlier in the afternoon.
Valentine had previously expressed her disagreement with mask warrants, saying hospitals were never at risk of being overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients. He had also criticized vaccines against the virus, expressing concerns about their safety.
Following his hospitalization, Valentine’s family said “he has never been an ‘anti-vaccine'” but “regrets not being more vehement” Pro-Vaccine “” and urged his listeners to do so. vaccinate against the coronavirus.
The letter written by Beth Valentine Dollar can be read in full below:
Steve and Mark were born 17 months apart and still so close. Then when I arrived five years after you, it was you and me. We were a team, and I can’t believe you left. You were my very first playmate. Even mom wrote in my baby book that I could pronounce all the boys’ names well – especially Pheeeel! She even told me that after school, instead of going outside to play, you would like to play with your little sister. She would make you go out and play with your friends! Some of my first and best memories are when you got me out of bed, when I was about three, on Saturday morning. You were fixing our cereal bowls, and we would sit on the floor by the TV and watch cartoons. In all of my birthday movies, you were always by my side to hand me presents, help me open them and make a big deal out of them.
When I grew up to school age and started having friends over to play or spend the night, you always had the games and the fun for us. I remember you putting on your superhero costumes and leading the charge! One day we even made a hole in a huge box to make it look like a television. Dad came over after work, and you read the news to him while I sat behind you and typed on a typewriter for sound effects. Just like Cronkite, and you even wore a coat and tie!
I also remember I thought you had magic (I know, too many episodes of Bewitched) when you opened the freezer and ordered the interior light to go out, and you did. I was stunned for many years until you finally confessed that you were pushing a button with your knee! You also helped me win a magic show in second grade using vinegar and an egg, and you wrote this catchy line: When I drop this raw egg, it will bounce like a rubber ball. Genius!
I also remember the wonderful boy band The Nashville Five, and I can’t hear I’ll be There by the Jackson Five without thinking about your excellent performance. Remember I got so mad when you didn’t want me to be a GoGo dancer? I also had the white patent boots to rock it. But I showed it to you by decorating your favorite tambourine with magic markers!
I fondly remember when you had friends, and you were so patient when I wanted to go with you or just go out. We played lots of pool games while you were teaching me 60s and 70s music – you knew all the stories about songs and singers, especially your Beatles phase. And when you brought Frampton Comes Alive !, you thought it was right up there with sliced bread. We continued to listen to this song when he made the guitar speak! Magical moments, certainly.
At that time, you graduated from high school when I was in sixth grade. When you left ECU and continued on the radio, I was kind of proud to hear you on the air or attend an event where you were the DJ. When you were at WRMT in Rocky Mount, mum had the intercom radio on, and she was turning down the music and turning up your commercials. She was a proud mom!
Then, on the darkest day of our lives, it was you who told me about the shipwreck and mom’s death. I remember falling into your chest crying and you held me. Hard to believe it was 40 years ago, last week August 14, when I was 16 and you were 21. We hung out with Steve, Mark and Dad and learned, from our big surprise, that we would laugh again and come back to life. .
Four years later, in 1985, you packed everything you had and took this Honda Prelude to Nashville, TN to conquer it, and you did! I have always been so proud that you went there without knowing a living soul to pursue your dreams of songwriting and radio. I still brag about you today with this story often! We were all so proud of you, and I couldn’t wait to go out every summer to see you. You were making your own way and had so much success.
Then you met your beautiful, funny and intelligent wife, Susan, and you got married in 1990. I had never seen you so happy, and you were perfect for each other. She will always be my sister-in-law. Then came your three fabulous boys, and your life was over. I loved the caring, loving and loving father you have become. As the boys got older it was so sweet to see how you interacted with them with so much love, laughter and unconditional love. They were lucky to have you as a father because it seemed like the role came so naturally to you. When I think of the wonderful life you had in Nashville and the wonderful family you have, it just makes me happy.
Not only have you been successful in your personal life, but you have had a career that you can be proud of. Starting out as a DJ and moving up to talk on the radio, you’ve always been in your element. The countless awards you have received and the respect of your colleagues is a testament to this. But wait, it doesn’t stop there! You have become a well-written author and the creator of dozens of lyrics and songs. I remember reading one of your books on the beach a few summers ago, and I was about to explode with pride. I wanted to go see everyone on the beach and say, “Look at this author! He is my brother!”.
While we were both busy with our family and our work, we would sometimes go weeks without speaking, but I always knew you were just a phone call away and you were never far from my heart and my thoughts.
Today is the second hardest day of my life because now I can’t pick up my phone to call or text. My heart breaks for your precious Susan, Carr, Campbell and Douglas as well as Steve, Mark, Barbara and all of our family and friends. I’m so glad that Steven, Harrison, Anna and I got to hang out with you in June. I will miss your laughter, your advice, your encouragement and your sense of humor. I could always count on you, and you couldn’t have been a better brother if you tried. It hurts so much, but our wonderful memories will help you. I love you so much. You can see mom before me, so please catch up with her. Tell dad that we miss him every day too. Give them both a big hug for me, and when people ask me how many brothers I have, I’ll always say three.
I love you Phil,