Marcus Lamb, a co-founder and the CEO of the conservative Christian Daystar Television Network who vocally opposed Covid-19 vaccines, has died at 64, weeks after he contracted Covid-19, the network said.
“It's with a heavy heart we announce that Marcus Lamb, president and founder of Daystar Television Network, went home to be with the Lord this morning," the network said a tweet Tuesday. "The family asks that their privacy be respected as they grieve this difficult loss. Please continue to lift them up in prayer."
Lamb's son, Jonathan Lamb, filled in for his father on a Nov. 23 Daystar broadcast and beseeched listeners to pray for his father's recovery from Covid-19.
Speaking to viewers from Lamb's hospital bedside via telephone, Lamb's wife, Joni Lamb, said, "With this thing, it's kind of like riding a roller coaster.
"It's like, you'll just be up and everything's great, and then you have a little lull, and then you come down low and then you come back up, but from everybody that I talk to — I think that's the pattern," she said.
"We can really feel the prayers of the people," she said, thanking viewers for their prayers.
"Pray specifically for his lungs to clear the Covid pneumonia and pray for his oxygen level to continue to be strong and to go up so that we can wean him off of oxygen and bring him home," she said.
Video: Omicron concerns ramp up the Covid booster push
Jonathan Lamb described his father's Covid infection as "a spiritual attack from the enemy" to "take down" Marcus Lamb.
The network has dedicated hours of broadcasts to anti-lockdown and anti-vaccination activists and groups.
In July 2020, the Lamb family devoted an hour of their broadcast to "censorship" around the Covid pandemic, featuring the misinformation group America's Frontline Doctors.
In May, Daystar broadcast an hourlong program with Robert F. Kennedy Jr., whose famous family denounced his anti-vaccination views in May 2019. Kennedy was recently banned by Instagram for posting Covid vaccination misinformation.
Vaccines remain the safest and most effective way to prevent the worst outcomes of Covid-19. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study found in September that they were still largely able to stop hospitalization in people infected with the highly contagious delta variant, and a British study found that the vaccinated are less likely to spread the coronavirus if they do become infected.
In light of the emergence of omicron, a new variant of concern that is spreading rapidly in southern Africa, the CDC strengthened its advice about Covid-19 booster shots Tuesday, saying all eligible adults should get them. Adults ages 18 and older become eligible six months after their initial Pfizer or Moderna series or two months after they get the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
In recent months, a number of prominent anti-vaccination Christian broadcasters have died from Covid-19. Conservative radio hosts Dick Farrell, Phil Valentine and Marc Bernier, who were unvaccinated, all died after they contracted Covid.