Tuesday, April 2, 2013

'CHiPs' fan from Louisiana leading effort to rename Lake Pontchartrain to Lake PonchandJon

Kenner, LA--Jayson Gilleau, 40, claims to be the "biggest 'ChiPs' fan in the world," and the seemingly endless memorabilia adorning his home (and front and back yards) in this New Orleans suburb paying homage to the late 70s and early 80s hit television show certainly backs up this bold statement.

So committed to "CHiPs" is the unemployed swamp boat repairman that he began lobbying for Louisiana's Lake Pontchartrain to be renamed Lake PonchandJon, after the show's two main characters Frank "Ponch" Poncherello and Jon Baker, all the way back in 1996.

"Really, if you think about it the Ponch part of the equation is already there, minus the 't.' I just want the state to remove the 'artrain' part and replace it with 'andJon.' I don't really think it's that big a deal," said Gilleau.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, 41, a "very big fan" of the show himself, met with Gilleau back in January after receiving letter number 1,289 about renaming the 620-square-mile lake.

"He is a very determined individual," said a smiling Jindal. "His passion is deep and I admire his commitment to the cause. He made a very convincing case, but--and don't get me wrong, I loved "CHiPs"--renaming Lake Pontchartrain would be a great disservice to Louisiana. I should note that renaming was really never an option, my security team mostly wanted me to meet with [Gilleau] to determine if he was a security threat."

Despite the disappointing meeting with Jindal, Gilleau vowed that his campaign is not over and he will fight on. "The 30th anniversary of the final episode is this July and it would be great if the Lake was renamed in time for that huge celebration that I will be holding on my back deck."

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