CHICAGO (CBS) — Normally, all the action in a barbershop takes place in the chairs.
But this morning, they all sat empty. Instead, all the action was outside the Church Street Barbershop in Evanston.
With the pull of a string, part of Church Street is now Samuel Johnson Place, an honor earned for cutting hair for 67 years.
Inside, the walls are lined with some of the athletes and celebrities who got their hair cut there. But as CBS 2’s Rob Johnson Reports, Sam, as the honoree is known, treats everyone like a VIP.
“Sam has been one of the most caring gentlemen in the community of Evanston for years. And one of the things that he enjoys is helping people to understand who they are making sure that folks educate themselves” said Ariana Lewis, an Evanston resident.
Today’s ceremony included a streetside serenade, and plenty of one-liners from the quick-witted barber.
“How did I get to be a barber,” Johnson jokes, “I fell one day and I had a clipper in my hand when the doctor slapped me…First time in history I ever seen a barber go from nowhere, 39th and Indiana, to the famous Church and Dodge Hall of Fame!”
“I’m proud of my dad,” Johnson’s son says. “Because he’s left a legacy for me…I have some big shoes to fill.”
Johnson has done much for his community, including many free haircuts for students.