Oprah Winfrey ABANDONS Destitute Dad — 'He's Struggling To Cope'

Jan. 11 2017, Published 10:09 a.m. ET

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Cold-hearted Oprah Winfrey has abandoned her lonely and aging father — choosing to spend her time with celebrity pals and greedily build her billion-dollar empire instead.

In a heart-wrenching world exclusive interview, 83-year-old Vernon Winfrey told that his famous daughter talks to him only twice a year!

Shockingly, the multi-tasking media mogul — worth an astounding $2.9 billion — can only be bothered to carve out 20 measly minutes from her daily schedule to talk to her ailing father.

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"We talk on the phone maybe a couple of times a year — on her birthday Jan. 29 and my birthday a couple of days later Jan. 31. We'll talk for about 20 minutes," Vernon told

Sadly, Vernon's closest friends have died in recent years, leaving him to watch football alone at his run-down home in East Nashville, Tenn.

What's more, Vernon — debilitated by Korean War injuries that destroyed his hearing and a stroke that's left him with an agonizing limp — has been forced to scale back his hours in his five-chair barber shop.

He charges $15 a haircut, and barely gets by.

"Oprah could change everything with a day's paycheck, but she only does the bare minimum to help him out," a source exclusively told

"It's sad to see Vernon struggle in such basic conditions, pretty much squalor. He scrapes by, but it's barely a living.

"He's a proud man, and doesn't like to say it, but he's struggling to cope and feels like he's been cut off.

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"Oprah lives in a huge mansion in California where she trucks in water just to keep the grass green, yet he's still cutting hair in a working-man's barber shop."

Oprah, 62, lived with Vernon while she was in high school, and got her start with a job at a local radio station. From there, her career took her from talk show host to author to founder of the cable network, OWN.

These days she's on the road promoting her first cookbook, Food, Health, and Happiness: 115 On-Point Recipes for Great Meals and a Better Life, and she snubbed Vernon to spend the holidays with her lifelong pal, CBS Morning News co-host Gayle King.

For now, Vernon's dying wish is to visit one of Oprah's many mansions, specifically her waterfront home on 1,800 idyllic acres in Hawaii.

"I told her I'd like to come and see it before I'm too old to travel," Vernon told

"But it's not just a matter of calling her up and telling her I'm coming. She could be anywhere at any given time."

He also bared his soul about his aching loneliness.

"I have six different guys I used to play checkers with, all a year or two older than me, but they're deceased," Vernon told

"So now, I look forward to Thursday night football, and Sunday night football. The older I've gotten, the more I've fallen in love with my bed. I just enjoy laying there."

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