On Feb. 16 CNN reports that National Geographic's "Snake Salvation" Pastor Jamie Coots has died of a snake bite. Pastor Coots was a staunch Pentecostal preacher that believed in the power of snake healing, despite the legal and health perils that it could cause him.
Pastor Coots refused medical treatment which ultimately lead to his death. He was a firm believer that poisonous snakebites will not harm believers as long as they are anointed by God. He was dead wrong. During the show, Jamie saw people die and be seriously injured to do snakebites, however, he still strongly believed that he would be saved.
The practice of handling poisonous snakes in healing practices has been outlawed in most states, however, in many Appalachian areas, it is still practiced. In February 2013 Coots was put on one year probation for bringing poisonous snakes into Tennessee where they are illegal. He was also previously arrested in 2008 for keeping 74 poisonous snakes in his home.
Pastor Jamie Coots was a third generation "serpent handler" and had hoped to pass on the church, Full Gospel Tabernacle in Jesus Name, and the practice, on to his adult son, Little Cody.