Falwell Joked: I'm Sleeping, Not Dead

He's been called a hatemonger and televangelist money grabber, but the late Rev. Jerry Falwell was a regular guy.

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He's been called a hatemonger and televangelist money grabber, but the late Rev. Jerry Falwell was a regular guy who had an eclectic gaggle of pals and was a sucker for poor college kids. In wife Macel Falwell's new book, Jerry Falwell, His Life and Legacy, the GOP preacher who died last May is portrayed as the kind of guy who drove to the mall, then hung a sign on his car window reading: "I'm not dead. I'm just sleeping while my wife shops." He was also a fan of local fave steak soup served at O'Charley's in Lynchburg, Va., where he once offered a waitress a full scholarship to his Liberty University because she couldn't afford it. And consider his friends, like Sen. Edward Kennedy, who spoke at Liberty in 1983. Macel says they dined with Kennedy years later and worried about being served "fancy sauces." When plain steak and potatoes arrived, she thought, "They're just regular people."