Man remembered as eccentric inventor with unusual backyard - KCTV5

Man remembered as eccentric inventor with unusual backyard

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A man found dead inside a Kansas City home was remembered Tuesday as an energetic spirit and amateur inventor.

The death was reported about 2 p.m. in the 3700 block of Montgall Avenue.

Police said a 55-year-old man was found inside a structure at the residence. Officers had come to check on the man after not hearing from him for several days.

His sister identified the deceased man as John Lemons, and said he apparently died from a medical condition.

Lemons' back yard included an elaborate art display in a back yard.

Lemons, a veteran of the U.S. Army, purchased the plot of land three years ago and made a modest home for himself in a 1-1/2-room wood structure he built himself. Neighbors say he began by living in a teepee before building the small home decorated with a cross. He installed a solar panel to provide heat and power.

Odd-looking items scattered the lawn. Family and neighbors say each of those items was some sort of invention he engineered.

A giant tree limb painted white and black was actually a crane he used to get to the roof of the little cabin. He fashioned it by adding a metal rod as a lever powered manually with a drawstring.

"He was eccentric and spirited," his sister, Rosie Lemons, said, "And very proud of his property."

A neighbor who did not want to be identified said Lemons mowed neighbors' lawns, always had a smile and often broke into dance.

"He sure could two-step," the neighbor said, "and he was real smart about making things."

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