Harper Lee’s admiration for Tulane music man Leonard Raybon

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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – Tulane Music Department chairman Leonard Raybon has one book that really stands out on the shelf.

It’s his copy of To Kill A Mockingbird.  And it’s signed by author Harper Lee

After Katrina, Leonard evacuated to Monroeville, Alabama where Harper Lee lived.

Through a mutual friend, Harper Lee asked Leonard if he would play and sing, just for her.

So they met, for about an hour at a Methodist church.

Leonard really wanted an autographed copy of her book, but was told that Harper Lee really didn’t give autographs.

But that Christmas, he got a signed copy.  She wrote, to Leonard Raybon, with admiration, Harper Lee.

You can hear a little of Leonard’s story here as he tells it to WGNO News with a Twist features reporter Wild Bill Wood.

Until now, Leonard shared his Harper Lee story only with family and friends.

Harper Lee died Friday at her home in Monroeville, Alabama.  She was 89.

Family members say she died in her sleep at an assisted living facility.

She won a Pulitzer Prize for her best selling book, To Kill a Mockingbird,

The book was published back in 1960.

Harper Lee said she never expected any success at all from the book.  She hoped for “a quick and merciful death at the hands of the reviewers”.

All she hoped for was a little encouragement from writing it.








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