Foundation honors El Faro victim with back-to-school event

300 Northside Jacksonville given day of fun, backpacks filled with supplies

Three hundred Jacksonville children in need were given a fun Saturday and left with backpacks filled with school supplies so that they will be prepared when school starts Monday.

The Lonnie S. Jordan Foundation and the We're for Jesus Ministries held the event for children in a Northside neighborhood.

Joanna Johnson created the foundation to honor her son Lonnie Jordan, who died when the El Faro sank near the Bahamas last fall. Out of that tragedy, she started a foundation to help others.

"Lonnie Jordan was a wonderful man; a giving man. Our purpose is to give back and to serve others," Johnson said.

The foundation worked together with the local church to provide the backpacks, schools supplies, clothes and fun activities.

"We're able to come back in his memory and make a difference to others, and others can see who we are, per say, as a family, and who he was through us," she said.

Bishop Elijah Johnson of We're for Jesus Ministries is thrilled to have the help to make this annual backpack giveaway reach more children in need.

"This neighborhood is very needful, right here on North Main Street," Bishop Johnson. "You can look outside and see how many people are around not only to get backpacks and supplies but clothes and food."

The Jordan Foundation is having a gala next month to celebrate his life and to strengthen the organization so it can help more community members in need. It will be held at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 23 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. For information and to get tickets, email lsjfoundation2016@gmail.com

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