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The Baltimore Sun

ED CHARON, 71 'The Rev. Shredder'

Ed Charon, who gained fame for ripping apart telephone books, often as he preached, died Sunday in Sutherlin, Ore.

The retired pastor at Umpqua Trinity Fellowship in Roseburg collapsed after returning from a church service, his wife, Betty, said.

In September, Mr. Charon tore through 56 Portland directories, each 1,006 pages long, in three minutes, claiming a Guinness World Record for the fifth time.

With that, he retired from performing such feats for the record books. He had taken up tearing directories in 1998, at age 63, after seeing someone do it on television.

He had huge hands - a 16 1/2 ring size, which is about six sizes larger than a typical man's.

Mr. Charon visited prisons in Oregon, Idaho and other states to minister to inmates and to spread the message that they could make positive changes in their lives.

He also spoke to high school students and at other venues, such as the county fair.

He once appeared on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, where comedian Robin Williams dubbed him "The Rev. Shredder."

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