EB Johnson benefit concert features country musician

Published 11:15 pm Friday, May 14, 2010

The lack of pop-tops in the home was the stimulus for a fundraising effort for a little girl who is continuing therapies following surgeries and treatments for a rare form of brain cancer.

The Goshen schools were collecting pop-tops from soft drink cans and each gallon jug they filled earned a night at the Ronald McDonald House in Birmingham for three-year-old E.B. Johnson and her family.

Jessica Helms’ family doesn’t drink canned sodas but she wanted to do something to help the family.

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“I don’t know Troy and Marla Johnson personally but I know their sons through school,” Helms said. “I was talking with my mother, Sandy Fellers, about doing something for E.B. and her family and she suggested that I ask Kevin (Sport) to do a benefit concert. Kevin is a good friend and was very willing when I asked him. Once we got started with the planning, things just started to snowball.”

The E.J. Johnson Benefit Concert featuring country music singer Kevin Sport will be at 6 p.m. Friday, May 21 at the Pike County Fairgrounds. Tickets are $10 for those ages 13 and over and $5 for ages 4-12. Children ages three and under are admitted free.

The headliner for the concert will be Kevin Sport who, after seven years, walked away from the Nashville scene. But the pull of music brought him back to the studio.

“Kevin’s debut album, ‘That’s Enough,’ is a testament to hard work and the unwillingness to let a life-long dream fade, Helms said. “His career in country music is really taking off. He is going to host a variety show on the Pursuit Network called ‘The Right Place.’ The show will highlight his journey in the music industry as well as interviews with a variety of country singers.

“We are very fortunate to have him in concert and everyone who enjoys country music will really enjoy Kevin.”

Also on stage will be Renny McNaughton, who is a cancer survivor, and Benji Sanders and County Line.

“The benefit for E.B. is going to be a family affair with a lot of activities planned for the children,” Helms said. “We’ll have a Clown that makes balloon animals, face painting, cotton candy and lots of other fun things for everyone.”

Helms said the benefit is an effort to relieve some of the financial burden on the Johnson family so that they can focus completely on E.B.’s care.

“We invite everyone to join us for this family event as we show our support for E.B. and her family,” Helms said. “We want to make E.B.’s journey to recovery as stress free for her family as possible. This is one way we can all help.”