75+ Year Old Artist Completing Cross-Country Walk for Hurricane Victims

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Artist Leonard F. Johnson left Venice Beach, CA March 11, 2005 to walk to Coney Island, NY. Mr. Johnson hopes to arrive in Brooklyn, NY, Friday, August 11th. After Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast Mr. Johnson has been raising funds for displaced families by sketching portraits.

Artist Leonard F. Johnson left Venice Beach, CA March 11, 2005 to walk to Coney Island, NY. Mr. Johnson hopes to arrive in Brooklyn, NY, Friday, August 11th. After Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast Mr. Johnson has been raising funds for displaced families by sketching portraits.

As an artist, Mr. Johnson had worked in New Orleans many times in the past four decades. “Katrina happened on my 75th birthday and my affinity for New Orleans redirected my fund raising efforts. Arnetra’s priorities would be the immediate needs of survival before education,” The artist lamented, “but I’m still committed to establishing the scholarship foundation.”

Since Wichita, KS the artist has raised more than $4,000 in behalf of the Red Cross by sketching portraits in front of Wal-Mart stores and at local Red Cross centers. “I have my patrons make their checks or money orders out to the American Red Cross or The Fuller Center for Housing and I send those checks to the perspective charities.” Mr. Johnson says.

Artist Leonard Johnson has financed this venture solely on his Social Security benefits and by the graces of others. Within 100 miles of his goal, he has already walked more than 3,000 miles. There have been no support groups. “I have slept along road sides and stayed in cheap motels when finances permitted. However many have invited me into their homes. Although the walking has never become fun, the whole venture has been very positive,” Mr. Johnson declares.

For more information, visit http://lejonarts.com

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