Alcoa man battles MS; raises money for non profits with Volunteer Spirit

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ALCOA, Tenn. (WVLT) There is a man in East Tennessee who shows people no matter what cards life may have dealt you, there is always an opportunity to do good for others.

On a hot summer day it's not uncommon to see Bob Johnson in front of your local grocery store. He's in a wheelchair constantly battling muscular dystrophy. Despite his struggles in life he is an equal member of the Knights of Columbus.

"Well, I care about other people. Helping them," he says.

He spends hours, no matter the heat, handing out Tootsie Rolls, and taking donations.

"To just see him come out on these hot weather days and sit under that canopy," remarks Cookie Crowson with Special Olympics of Tennessee.

The Special Olympics of Tennessee is just one of several organizations that benefit from the money raised by Bob and his fellow Knights.

"I'm home trying to find shade and not wanting to mow my lawn, but this man is out here hours and hours of the day raising money for what he believes in," says Crowson.

The heat isn't the only struggle Bob faces.

"I got robbed here in the Spring. They let people know, and people really stepped up and helped," says Bob.

After that robbery, came the blessings.

"We ended up with more money afterwards than what we had to start with," says Bob.

Bob does alright. More than alright actually. Thanks to much of his work the Alcoa council of the Knights of Columbus raised more than twenty thousand dollars last year. The most of any council in the state.

"My own philosophy, the secret to true inner peace is to focus on the needs of others," says Bob.

"He oozes Volunteer Spirit, and it's contagious. It rubs off on us. It works really well," says Tim Brown with the Knights of Columbus.

"Obviously he's got a Volunteer Spirit and a heart as big as a mountain," says Crowson.