Man spreads message to tear down former PTL tower

A Fort Mill man paid $1,000 to put up a billboard that demands the Morningstar Tower, which has been an eyesore for years, be torn down.

FORT MILL, S.C. — A Fort Mill man paid $1,000 to put up a billboard that demands the Morningstar Tower, which has been an eyesore for years, be torn down.

Eyewitness News anchor Eric Philips spoke to the man about his mission to bring down the tower.

The billboard is on Interstate 77 south just before the Carowinds exit and reads, "Morning Star it's been 11 years, tear the tower down."

That billboard is the latest brainchild in the battle for Eric Kinsinger.

"If I did this in my house and just let it fall into a state of disrepair, they would have come in and torn it down by now," Kinsinger said. "I don't know why they're allowed to get away with it and we are not."

The 21-story tower was built decades ago during the Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker's PTL empire.

That crumbled and the tower stood unfinished in 2004 when Morning Star Fellowship Church bought the land with the understanding they'd tear the tower down. 

But the county gave them an opportunity and timeline to renovate it.

That has long passed yet the building still stands. 

Kinsinger has been vocal about this issue that has literally loomed over his neighborhood for years.

"Is some kid going have to die inside this building exploring before someone cares about this building?" Kinsinger said.

Since the billboard went up on Monday, Kinsinger has gotten many more likes on his anti-tower Facebook page but he said he's also gotten some personal attacks.

It's yet to be seen how effective the billboard will be long term.

The billboard will come down late Friday night and though the building will still be standing, Kinsinger said he's not done yet.

"There's always something else that I can come up with," he said.

Officials in York County said they're in the middle of legal proceedings they hope will lead to Morningstar Church demolishing the tower.

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