Tuesday, December 31, 2002

What one person can do:

A man whose anti-abortion campaign has led to dozens of Scripture-laced billboards across Indiana and Kentucky says he never anticipated it would grow so large. John DeFriend said he thought the Billboards for Life campaign would be a one-year project when it started in 1994, but has kept at it because he hoped to change some hearts about abortion as well as "save some lives." DeFriend first rented billboard space in 1973 with a friend in Minnesota soon after the U.S. Supreme Court released its decision legalized abortion throughout the country. "I wanted to do something about it right away," he said. DeFriend, who now lives in Floyds Knobs about 10 miles north of Louisville, returned to the billboard idea after he had lived in Indiana for a few years. He says the group has spent more than $2 million on the billboards, with money coming from individuals, Roman Catholic parishes and Knights of Columbus chapters in Indiana and Kentucky. It now has 35 permanent billboards and each fall up to 150 more bear such messages for two to three months.

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