Artist chooses Georgetown as home after losing all in fire

      By Stacy

      GEORGETOWN, S.C. (WCIV) -- John Walters was smiling Monday night though it hadn't been an easy couple of weeks.

      "He lost his art. He lost his art supplies. He lost everything, including his dog," said Laurie Manning, owner of Portofino's restaurant in Georgetown.

      Manning organized a fund raiser for her friend Monday night. The money will help Walters rebuild his life and livelihood, after he lost his home and tens of thousands of dollars worth of art.

      When ABCNews4 spoke with Walters the day after the fire, he wasn't sure about his future. He was considering moving as far away as Texas; he said he'd go wherever his art was appreciated. But, Walters didn't have to look far to find home. He had decided to stay in Georgetown.

      "To see everything that happened to Georgetown the last few weeks and to see people pulling together, he definitely needs to stay here," Manning said.

      Manning said she saw the spirit of Georgetown in Walters's vibrant pieces.

      "There's one in the back on the wall that he did right in the street the other day," she said. "It still shows Front Street and how bright he made it, even after everything that's happened."

      Walters said he couldn't be more proud to call Georgetown home and to call his neighbors family.

      The fund raiser collected more than $2,000, not including the silent auction totals.