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Bay Area Apocalypse Believers Awaited End, Skeptics Carried On

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A billboard paid for by Family Radio of Oakland, claiming Judgment Day will take place on May 21, 2011. (CBS)

A billboard paid for by Family Radio of Oakland, claiming Judgment Day will take place on May 21, 2011. (CBS)

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OAKLAND (CBS SF/AP) — “It’s God who leads you, not Harold Camping.”

Those are the words of Keith Bauer, a trucker who drove his family in their minivan from Maryland to California to await the 6 p.m. Rapture predicted by Camping, a radio evangelist.

But the appointed hour has come and gone at various spots around the globe and no extraordinary cataclysm has occurred.

Outside the Oakland headquarters of Family Radio International, which was founded by Camping, Bauer took the whole thing in stride. He says he was somewhat skeptical but drove out to the West Coast because of his belief in God.

Many people spent months warning the world of the apocalypse, some giving away earthly belongings or draining their savings accounts.

The May 21 doomsday message was sent far and wide via broadcasts and web sites by Camping, an 89-year-old retired civil engineer who has built a multi-million dollar Christian media empire that has been publicizing his apocalyptic prediction.

A Family Radio spokesman asked about the prediction after 6 p.m. said “It’s still May 21 and God’s going to bring it.”

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)

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