Chiefs safety Eric Berry was all smiles during a public appearance at Sole Patch barber shop in Corinth Square Saturday — but he had a serious reason for showing up.
Berry was there to support friend Inky Johnson, a former University of Tennessee defensive back who served as an inspiration to Berry during his time with the Volunteers. Johnson suffered a debilitating shoulder injury that ended his playing career and made him lose feeling in his right arm. Though his playing days were over, Johnson served as a mentor to Berry during his time in Tennessee. When he joined the Chiefs, Berry asked to wear 29 as his jersey number in honor of Johnson.
Johnson recently co-authored his biography, and is presently on a book promotion tour.
“I hope the book will help people who read it keep hope and faith,” Johnson said. “Things are not always as bad as they may seem.”
Sole Patch owner Ron Mayer suggested his store as a location for the book signing after hearing from a mutual acquaintance at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kansas City that Berry was looking for a host. Johnson said the signing tour would continue throughout the country, including stops in Boston and Denver, among others.