Patty Hunter can talk like she’s known you forever when you’ve just met— which is fitting for her TV host and producer occupation at Allen County, Indiana’s station Access Fort Wayne— with a potential audience of a quarter million viewers.
“After what I’ve seen in my past; after what I’ve witnessed, I’m not afraid anymore,” says Hunter, who uses her weekly show “Patty’s Page “to draw awareness to the dangers of abortion.
“I used to be so shy that I would turn this red,” she tells me, indicating a shade of yarn that she’s knitting with during our Skype interview. “But I’m not shy anymore, man!”
Hunter has been a poet and lyricist for close to three decades, penning words to songs like “God Speed,” which was sung by Canadian country music singer Patricia Conroy. For five years, Hunter hosted all manner of artistic figures— from head honcho of the tribute rock band Brit Floyd, to actresses Patty Duke and Lauren Chapin. But her first guest was from a crisis pregnancy Hope Center.
“I’ve always loved life,” says Hunter, who is a member of Lutherans for Life and Allen County Right to Life. “When I was a little girl, whenever I would see an animal die…I would just go to pieces, because I love life. I didn’t want anything to suffer or die.”
“And as I grew up, I found out my aunt was an abortionist,” recalls Hunter, who is originally from Toronto and whose maternal aunt became a doctor there in the 1940s when it was largely a men’s profession. When Hunter asked what an abortionist did, her mother assured her that the job only involved removing blobs of tissue.
“But I knew,” says Hunter, “and she knew. They just didn’t want to admit to it, that it was taking a child’s life.” People whom Hunter knew had abortions more than once, and one friend nearly lost her life in childbirth due to complications caused by a prior abortion. As soon as she found out that her own gynecologist was an assistant to her abortionist Aunt Anne, Hunter quit seeing her. But Hunter’s mother continued to work for Aunt Anne as a receptionist.
“It bothered me to no end,” Hunter remembers. “I was Roman Catholic in those days. It brought awareness of how life is important. It hurts.”
Aunt Anne never married, and in 1975 she died in the Bahamas while doing research to cure syphilis. Hunter never hated her aunt, but she was so angered at the deaths of innocent children that it took her 40 years to forgive her.
“I don’t know whether she ever repented,” says Hunter, who has been grateful to pro-life groups’ help in easing her pain.
In 1988, abortion was legalized in Canada. “Canada is more liberal, killing more kids than the United States,” observes Hunter.
“The generation now knows no other way of thinking. They think it’s a normal thing to do, to kill your baby…We have to re-teach the generation that life is important.”
That’s what Hunter intends to do with “Patty’s Page.”
“It’s a page out of my life, really,” says Hunter. Hunter has been surprised by the variety of people who have embraced her show and will give her a hug and thanks when they find her in public. The hope and grace she has to share is contagious. “He is risen,” Hunter reminds me. “Hallelujah!”
This June she will be interviewing Casey Cox and Monica Kelsey, who advocate bringing baby boxes to Indiana.
Hunter will soon have a radio show on WELT-LP 95.7 FM Fort Wayne Community Radio.