Judy Shepard, the mother of Matthew
Shepard, isn't commenting on the passing of Fred Phelps.
Phelps founded the Topeka, Kansas-based
Westboro Baptist Church in the 1950s with a message of “God hates
activist Fred Phelps dead at 84.)
Judy Shepard spent the better part of a
decade lobbying for passage of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd,
Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, which is co-named after her son who
was brutally murdered in 1998 by two men he met in a gay bar.
“Regarding the passing of Fred
Phelps, Dennis [Shepard] and I know how solemn these moments are for
anyone who loses a loved one,” she
wrote on Facebook. “Out of respect for all people and our
desire to erase hate, we've decided not to comment further.”