Pay It Forward: East St. Louis High School band director

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EAST ST. LOUIS (KPLR) - The East St. Louis High School band is recognized nationally and receives awards from around the country year after year.

A lot of the credit for the band's success goes to the band director who tirelessly gives his time, talent and money to students and tonight we are Paying It Forward.

The East St. Louis High School band is called 'The Pride of East St. Louis', and many people at the school and in the community say they are proud of John Barnes for leading the band to success for 13 years. A coworker and friend Kim Jaoko nominated him for the Pay It Forward and our camera was there when she interrupted his class with the surprise.

Barnes donates a lot of time and money towards the band, working long hours, recruiting band members and using his own money to buy band supplies.

Barnes say the $500 will go right back into the East St. Louis High School band program.

Tonight's Pay It Forward is brought to you by First Bank. If you would like to nominate a deserving person for the award go to fox 2 now .com and look for the Pay It Forward page.