To the editor:
It was wonderful to see the piece about the continued jazz scene in Lawrence in the Sunday issue of the Journal-World and, in particular, the focus on both Tommy Johnsons. Tommy Jr. is an excellent trumpet player and tennis player and is working towards his Ph.D. in chemistry at Kansas University. His talent level is obvious.
However, I am so glad that the article also mentioned Tommy Sr., whom we lost on June 17, 2010, from liver cancer. “Big Tommy,” as he was so fondly known, was, quite frankly, one of the most wonderful human beings I have ever met and, like his son, was a great trumpet player and was extremely intelligent. He also had a fantastic sense of humor.
For the last 21 years of his life, Tommy worked for the Community Living Opportunity Group (CLO), which helps mentally and physically challenged people function and live independently. Tommy loved and took great pride in his work, which shows the true nature of this wonderful person. So, whenever the name Tommy Johnson (either Senior or Junior) might appear in future issues of the Journal-World, people should recognize what this family has given to the community.