Watergate figure Chuck Colson reportedly near death
Chuck Colson, 80, underwent surgery this month to remove a pool of clotted blood on the surface of his brain.
April 18th, 2012
12:25 PM ET

Watergate figure Chuck Colson reportedly near death

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

Washington (CNN) - Chuck Colson, the convicted Watergate figure turned evangelist, is near death after suffering a brain hemorrhage earlier this month, his media representatives said Wednesday.

“It is with a heavy, but hopeful heart that I share with you that it appears our friend, brother and founder will soon be home with the Lord,” Jim Liske, CEO of Prison Fellowship Ministries, which Colson founded, said in a statement.

“Chuck's condition took a decided turn yesterday, and the doctors advised Patty and the family to gather by his bedside,” Liske said, referring to Colson’s wife.

Colson, 80, underwent surgery this month to remove a pool of clotted blood on the surface of his brain.

Colson was special counsel to President Richard Nixon and the first member of the Nixon administration to serve prison time for charges stemming from the 1972 Watergate scandal.

“He admits he was guilty of political ‘dirty tricks’’ and willing to do almost anything for the cause of his president and his party,” according to Colson’s official biography.

In 1974, Colson served seven months of a one- to three-year sentence. Not long after his release, he founded Prison Fellowship, which calls itself “the world's largest outreach to prisoners, ex-prisoners and their families,” with a presence in 113 countries.

Colson also hosts a daily radio commentary called BreakPoint that airs on stations nationwide.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Leaders

soundoff (369 Responses)
  1. LtButRt

    Sheriff Joe,

    I would like offer my humble counter point; but , you got to get your head out of your a** first.

    April 18, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
    • Sheriff Joe

      it's probably the only way that your counter point would make sense.

      April 18, 2012 at 11:00 pm |
    • Sherifd Willy Montana


      As the sheriff of this part of town i give you both a summons. You are summoned to a good ole fashined western shootout. Strap your britches boys! Meet me at the OK Coral!

      April 18, 2012 at 11:46 pm |
    • Randy

      Hot Damn! A strap-on summons!

      April 19, 2012 at 12:32 am |
  2. Boots

    I just wish that sack of sh**t would hurry up and die already. This is the umpteenth "Colson near death" article that nobody but losers and jerk0ffs think is a "tragedy" that he's near death.
    If he needs a little push, I'd be glad to stomp on his stupid head and crush his stupid skull. Sounds like he needs a push off the nearest balcony.
    I lived through the Nixon era. I saw what he did. I could care less how "reformed" he says he is or what slobbering religious antics he's performing in front of a crowd. The guy deserves death. His religious "conversion" is just total hogwash and his "ministries" are just a scam.
    Will no one rid us of this troublesome turd?

    April 18, 2012 at 10:10 pm |
    • Sir Kensington Hitch Arthur Mcdonald IV

      Angry much? Did this man oersonallly do something to you? If not then youre overreacting and acting like an immature juvenile who acts like they know eveyrthing, but they know nothing.

      April 18, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
  3. treehouse

    So for anyone who's being a jerk, I've read most of one the man's books, and for an evangelist, he's actually not a dick. His stories are actually generally well written and have some interesting stuff in them- the heavy handed "You're going to hell" stuff you get with a lot of evangelists was not present here–I wish him well and I hope others do too

    April 18, 2012 at 9:28 pm |
    • Chad

      well said

      April 18, 2012 at 10:38 pm |
  4. Barry Wom

    Charles Colson is truly a great man. Thrown in prison for actively guiding and participating in one of the worst disgraces this country has undergone, Chuck Colson turned it all around and created a large ministry that brought him fame and fortune. He regained his political clout, and he grew great wealth, which Jesus wants for his flock. I just hope the eye of Jesus' needle isn't too small for him to pass through.

    April 18, 2012 at 9:13 pm |
  5. Sir Kensington Hitch Arthur Mcdonald IV

    Hello all,

    Anyone want to debate? Ill destroy any one on here!! Choose ur side and its ame over.

    April 18, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
    • Randy

      Sure. Let's debate. You can start by sucking my dik.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:09 pm |
    • Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand

      Mr. McDonald IV, I'm sure that you are indeed a masturdebater.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Ok Kensington,

      I find there to be insufficient evidence to posit the belief in any god, let alone the christian interpretation. Convince me otherwise.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:18 pm |
    • Sir Kensington Hitch Arthur Mcdonald IV

      I'm busy answering Randy, then I'll get right on you.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:26 pm |
    • Sir Kensington Hitch Arthur Mcdonald IV

      @randy – Thanks for proving youre too dumb to even have a debate. Boom.

      @mary. – Thanks for proving youre too dumb to even have a debate. Done.

      @hawaii – Just because thats your opinion doesnt mean its necessarily right. Burned.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      I'm not asserting that I am right. I'm saying that there is inssufficient evidence to a specific claim. However, if that is truly your answer, then your debating skills are pretty pathetic.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
    • Randy

      What do you expect from someone who throws down with "Choose ur side and its ame over." He sucks at both debating and sucking. You need some new hobbies, Kenny.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
    • Sir Kensington Hitch Arthur Mcdonald IV

      @hawaii – youre acting right about not acting right in your original post. Youre jumping through words. Double Boommmmm!!

      @randy mr dandy – nice comment, youre so original, absolutely breathtaking. Your comment definitely soeaks volumes towards your character? Owneddddddd.

      April 18, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      I guess all you really can do is be an idiot. Talk about debate fail on your part.

      April 18, 2012 at 10:04 pm |
    • Boots

      Total and utter fail by Sir Chump sitting at McDonalds the Fourth.

      Look, punk, when you get a clue, the rest of us will probably have a heart attack from sheer astonishment.

      In the meantime, don't worry, your debating skills and 99 cents will get you a cheeseburger at the McDonalds where you are at. You won't starve if you have the 99 cents.

      April 18, 2012 at 10:14 pm |
    • Sir Kensington Hitch Arthur Mcdonald IV

      @boots – I dont need mcdonalds cheeseburgers thank you very much, how clever. I do own some Wendys and subway franchises owever. merked!!!

      April 18, 2012 at 11:04 pm |
  6. Charles Manson

    Hey, I am a Christian now! Tell me how much you love me! Tell those stupid atheists how foolish they are not to see how much better I am now, how saved and full of grace I am, what a model of humanity I instantly became when I said "Jesus is my Lord."

    Yes, preachers all over America will praise the wonderful lesson of Charles Manson, Christian, a ray of hope and goodness in this dark world, a role model for our children.

    Because if Christians can believe that Charles Colson, a man who sold out his country, is a saint, then Charlie Manson can be a Christian saint too.

    April 18, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • Sadie Boyd


      April 18, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
    • Karen

      Paul, writing to the church in Corinth, talks about two kinds of sorrow. "Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death" (2 Corinthians 7:10

      April 19, 2012 at 11:42 am |
  7. Sheriff Joe

    I hope it's not too late for this country to wake up and figure out the shlt Obama and the radical left are trying to get away with. It'll make Watergate look like your 5 year old's birthday party. It's coming. It won't be pretty when the SHTF.

    April 18, 2012 at 8:53 pm |
    • MarineVet

      Have you spent much time here on earth, Sheriff Joe?

      April 18, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • You are a fool

      Hey stupid! Haven't you noticed that the Obama administration has had the least scandal BY FAR for the last century of presidencies, perhaps of all of them? Compare that to the Yellowcake Scandal and the Valerie Plame Scandal and the Attorneygate Scandal and the torture scandals (numerous) and the Secret Rendition Scandal and the Black Prison Scandal and the Abu Graib scandal and the Illegal Wiretapping Scandal, all of the last Republican president?

      Look in the mirror if you want to see the party of corruption and scandal.

      Want me to help you remember the Reagan scandals?

      April 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • Sheriff Joe

      Oh my. Look at this. Oh my oh my. http://obamascandalslist.blogspot.com/

      And he's still got another year to go!

      April 18, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
    • Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand

      You know Joe, I figured your website would be a laugh, and you delivered! Nothing like seeing that terrible Cat Food Commission scandal! Oh that Obama and his nefarious Cat Food Commission scandal!

      What horrors will tomorrow bring in Obama's America? I bet that National Commission on Juggling scandal will break, shocking the world!

      Cat Food Commission scandal. Good one.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
    • Sheriff Joe

      Read #136 regarding the 'cat food commission.' It turns your attempt at a funny little deflection turn kinda sour.


      April 18, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
    • Boots

      Another clueless troll. Sheriff Joe, don't you know that impersonating an officer is a felony? Better change your name quick.

      April 18, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
    • Sheriff Joe

      Classic liberal bullshlt deflection. Don't deal with the message – just disparage the messenger.

      April 18, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
  8. Nooks

    I feel so sorry for the family, but it is also a happy occasion that he is going to see Jesus face to face.

    April 18, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      off your meds? no heaven or hell can be shown to exist, so the whole seeing jesus thing is to make people feel better about the loss of a loved one...nothing more...it alleviates dealing with grief properly

      April 19, 2012 at 10:11 am |
  9. Elle

    When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
    “Where, O death, is your victory?
    Where, O death, is your sting?”
    The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
    Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

    God Bless Chuck Colson, an amazing man who humbles himself and started an amazing ministry that is now spread to 113 countries. Helping the demoralized in prison.

    Soon, he will hear the words we all long to hear

    "Well done good and faithful servant... thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord."

    April 18, 2012 at 8:42 pm |
  10. second chance

    The Angel Tree Programme is one of the most thoughtful charities out there that was established to reach out and bless children of incarcerated parents.

    Colson,thanks for all the great work you did in restoring hope to the lost!

    April 18, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
  11. John Doe

    It saddens my heart to see such hateful comments day in and day out

    April 18, 2012 at 8:26 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      there's a pill for that.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:31 pm |
    • John Doe


      Whats that mean? The hate shown in these comments are no laughing matter

      April 18, 2012 at 8:43 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Obviously, if you're not laughing, then you haven't taken enough pills.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:47 pm |
  12. just sayin

    PROVEN Prayer is evidence of psychosis. God Bless!

    April 18, 2012 at 8:19 pm |
    • Andrew Raines

      Well if the liberal trolls over at media matters told you that, then it must be true.

      Oh wait, did you hear it from MSNBC and Rachel Maddow???

      April 18, 2012 at 8:31 pm |
    • just sayin

      I mean just Christian prayer. Only Christians are idiots.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
    • just sayin

      Damned idiot psychotic Christians.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:39 pm |
  13. Andrew Raines

    Jesus didn't come to call on those who think they're righteous, he came for those that know they're sinners and need to repent.

    Oh you liberals..... which one are you????

    April 18, 2012 at 8:12 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Throwing around political words on an article about a dying man is pretty stupid. Why not go to the political section tool.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:15 pm |
    • Andrew Raines


      I arrived at this comment section and found all the hate filled little liberal trolls out in full force, so I'm forced to respond in kind.

      don't start nothing, won't be nothing..

      April 18, 2012 at 8:30 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Hey Hawaii, did you find Barry's real birth certificate yet? How about his real social security number, no – not the one from Conn. Or his draft card? Bwahahhahaha.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:31 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Nice talking points. Here let me do what you do.

      Wow the conserva-nazis are out today. Did you read all your "facts" on FAUX news?

      Gee I wonder if that makes me look as "smart" as you two idiots.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
    • just sayin


      April 18, 2012 at 8:38 pm |
  14. Jim

    Well, at last it will be Chuckie in Hell. Another bloated religious-right tick who got fat and wealthy feeding off the Body of Christ bites the dust. Wouldn't you like to hear the lies that guy's going to try to get away with when he meets his Maker? Should have read Matthew 25:31-46. Send not to know for whom the bell tolls, Chuckie; it tolls for thee.

    April 18, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
    • Andrew Raines

      That's incredibly kind words you have to offer to a man on his last moments.

      I sure love that compassion that you liberals have cornered the market on..

      April 18, 2012 at 8:02 pm |
    • HokieLefty

      Praying for you big Jim. Not because you don't want me to, because you're lost.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:19 pm |
    • just sayin

      Prayer is evidence of psychosis. God Bless

      April 18, 2012 at 8:24 pm |
    • Andrew Raines

      just sayin,

      Did Rachel Maddow tell you this, or Van Jones????

      Of course communists don't believe in God, their only God is government.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • just sayin

      I don't give a crap about any other religion other than Christianity. The others don't matter. Only Christians are a threat to my liberal-socialist agenda. Everyone else, including the Muslims, Sikhs, etc. will vote for the left. Only the psychotic Christians are a problem for us.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:42 pm |
  15. Truth

    Peace be to all!!!

    April 18, 2012 at 7:31 pm |
  16. Ms. Mac

    Prayer works. It is not a magical formula. But God can hear our prayers and we don't know how our prayers will be answered but it will be for the good whether for the person or others around that person. All of the negative remarks don't mean anything. God forgives if we go to Him on our knees and that is what Mr. Colson has done and look at all of the lives he helped, prisoners and theri families.

    April 18, 2012 at 6:36 pm |
  17. NJBob

    The damage this man has done during his lifetime is breathtaking in its scope.

    April 18, 2012 at 6:00 pm |
    • Ms. Mac

      He turned his life around to help others that is what really counts. What have you done?

      April 18, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • graceandpeas

      The DAMAGE?? This man has displayed grace and is living proof that people can change and positively impact others. Your words are hurtful and ignorant.

      April 18, 2012 at 7:38 pm |
    • Andrew Raines

      Damage???? HA! That's laughable.

      Obama has given this country $5 trillion dollars of debt in 3 years, and taken over 1/6 of the economy through Obamacare, and kept unemployment higher than at any time since the Great Depression.

      But, you have the audacity to say that Chuck has caused damage.... You liberals are so rabid that it's just a joke.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:05 pm |
    • NJBob

      Sorry. I'm from Jersey, after all, so having my head up my ass is my natural condition.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:44 pm |
  18. Karen

    My husband and I attended a Chuck Colon prison fellowship day in Concord, New Hampshire in 2003, I believe. We will always remember him standing outside on a beautiful summer day speaking to the inmates. He said, "the only difference between you and me is that you got caught".

    I remember the story about his promise to a man he befriended while Chuck was serving time that he would not forget him when he was released. The man's response was, "yeah, right". It wasn't long after that Chuck began his prison ministry.

    He will be greatly missed. He spoke with truth and conviction and certainly had the wisdom of the Lord.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
    • Yes!

      Chuck Colon? Karen, I love you! What a precise Freudian slip!

      April 18, 2012 at 6:20 pm |
  19. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    April 18, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • just sayin

      Prayer worked for me. God put his warm hand up my b u tt to stop me from sh ! tt ing myself once. God Bless!

      April 18, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • Jesus

      Prayer doesn’t not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!.!.!~

      April 18, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
    • NJBob

      @ Jesus - You are absolutely right!

      April 18, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
    • The Great White North

      CANADA ! ! ! ! Canada Canada CANADA ! ! ! ! ! ! !

      We have mooses and Mounties and Molson because we're CANADA ! ! !

      We ain't got just sayin and all the rest of him in Canada, eh? Ain't got no Tea Party. Ain't got no Limbaugh or Coulter or Fred Phelps or any of that. Just Mooses. Meeses. Whatever.

      Canada rocks!

      April 18, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • Andrew Raines

      Oh you liberals all come out in droves to show your compassion for a dying man.

      Hey, and make sure you bash Christianity while you're at it...

      You liberals are way smarter than us Conservative Christians....... yeah voting for Hope & Change showed that you're all waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more intelligent than everyone else.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:08 pm |
    • Captain Startle, Air Canada

      Yawwwn. How long was I asleep? Crick in my neck. Ungh. Let's ask Barbie for some coffee. Wait.. what the hell's that? That bright light, right there, directly ahead of us?! It's a C-17 coming right at us !!!

      ***** Aggghhhhhh!!!! *******

      Dive, Dive !!! OMG, we're going to have a midair collis -

      Oh. Never mind, it's just Venus. Sorry. Someone should go apologize to the passengers stuck to the ceiling....

      April 19, 2012 at 1:08 am |
  20. Rabi Maharaj

    I met Chuck Colson at a leadership conference in Wash. DC many years ago and I was quite impressed at how humble and approachable he was. He took time to listen attentively to you and always responded thoughtfully. It was also impressive to watch him interact with the many who sought to dialog with him. His remarkable conversion is astounding; and his total commitment to a unique ministry in a desperate area of need, as well as the resulting endless number of transformed lives are quite admirable and substantial grounds for giving a loving God all the glory.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:36 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.