Couple Says They're Having a Ball Owning Bakkers' Doghouse With AM-PTL
May. 28, 1987
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) _ George and Helen Campbell don't mind sending friends to their doghouse. In fact, they may display it at area churches.
That's because the couple's doghouse is no ordinary structure.
The air-conditioned doghouse, once owned by television evangelists Jim and Tammy Bakker, was purchased for $630 at Saturday's auction to raise money for the Bakkers' former ministry, PTL.
''Right now I'm using (it) to have a ball,'' George Campbell, a 63-year old retired Conrail conductor, said Wednesday.
His wife, Helen, said they will display the doghouse in their yard, but she wasn't sure if their terrier-mix dogs, J.R. and Cissie, will use it.
''They can use it if they want to, but they're house dogs,'' she said.
The doghouse was first bought by a California construction contractor for $4,500 at the auction at the PTL's Heritage USA complex in Fort Mill, S.C., but the contractor donated the doghouse back to the auction, giving the Campbells their shot at it.
The Bakkers' pet didn't use the doghouse, according to PTL officials, because the noise from the air conditioner disturbed the dog.
The auction raised $200,000 for the PTL ministry, which is $70 million in debt, PTL officials have said. Bakker resigned as head of PTL in March after admitting that he had extramarital relations more than six years before with a young church secretary.
''I bought it just because it was in the news, and for the air conditioner and all that junk,'' Campbell said of the doghouse. ''I bought it just to have it.''
Campbell said they may also make the doghouse available to area churches for promotions.
The couple turned down an offer from a Florida man to buy the doghouse for $1,000.
Campbell said he's thrilled with all the fame the doghouse has brought him and his wife. He said he has been interviewed by several radio stations, newspapers and television stations.
''I've been telling my grandkids that they have a big-shot grandfather, but they don't believe it.''