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NASCAR Driver Jimmie Johnson Honored In El Cajon

Jimmie Johnson accepts his personalized guitar at a ceremony in El Cajon, June 17, 2014.
Christopher Maue
Jimmie Johnson accepts his personalized guitar at a ceremony in El Cajon, June 17, 2014.

Race car fans turned out in El Cajon on Tuesday to honor NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson, who grew up in the East County and graduated from Granite Hills High.

Johnson has won NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series six times and is among the top three winningest race car drivers in history.

His foundation has given more than $1 million to schools in El Cajon and the city unveiled one of three street signs named Jimmie Johnson Drive.

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Longtime fan Linda Jensen was thrilled. She brought a high school photo of Johnson posing with her daughter.

"I love him to death," Jensen said, "he's as kind of a person as he is a good driver."

At the street sign dedication, Johnson spoke to his fans and supporters:

"Honestly, one of the most frightening things with my job is being in front of a podium," he said. "Being in a race car going 200 mph is a piece of cake, but standing up here is really the hardest thing to do in my job."

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The NASCAR driver continued with a few gracious remarks: "To be here in my hometown and to have all of you come out today means the world to me, thank you."

Johnson had the day named in his honor and received a custom Taylor Guitar with his race car No. 48 printed on it.

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