Concern for the health of musician John Fleming is resonating in the Shuswap.
That was made evident Saturday, Nov. 16, on the Nexus stage at Salmon Arm’s First United Church, where a seven-hour benefit concert raised more than $10,000 in donations to support Fleming, who was recently diagnosed with a brain tumour.
To support their brother “Johnny Skull,” his band mates from Seal Skull Hammer organized Saturday’s Johnny Skull Variety Show. The concert started at 3 p.m. and ran until 10. p.m. A silent auction benefiting Fleming’s recovery served as an additional fundraiser.
The donations were largely brought in from entrance fees and donations of good will. As of Saturday night, the money raised from the silent auction had yet to be tallied.
In addition, a GoFundMe page also created for Fleming has reached more than half of its $10,000 goal.
Seal Skull Hammer’s Alton Gowen was overjoyed with the support from those who attended and donated.
“It’s obviously overwhelming how a community can come together and support somebody we love so much,” Gowen said. “It’s such a good community we have here in Salmon Arm.”
Fleming made an appearance at the concert earlier in the day to listen to the music and speak with concert attendees.
“I would like to give Johnny massive props for coming here and being Johnny and handling everything as well as he did,” said Darin Herting, who also plays in Seal Skull Hammer. “We all love Johnny and I’m glad that he got to see that.”
Those who want to wish Fleming well can do so on a Facebook group being maintained by friends and family. The group is called Love for John -aka Brother John Fleming Group.