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'Prophet,' an Unmistakable Man in Black, Dies

Some residents of Lake Forest were familiar with Charles Barnes, a transient who was known to spend time in south Orange County.

He was a man without a home, but had a persona as big as his shoulders. Dressed head-to-toe in black and walking on the streets of Lake Forest—El Toro Road near the corner of Rockfield among them—the man who called himself "Prophet" was unmistakable to those who passed him.

His real name was Charles Barnes. Though he looked like he was misplaced from a Raiders football game, he was familiar to residents of other south Orange County cities as well, largely because of his distinct look.

Barnes was found dead Tuesday morning in Santa Ana, according to the Orange County Register. He was 54, the cause of death apparently natural causes.

Without question, he was a man who stood out from the crowd.

Read the full story here.

El Toro Resident December 25, 2011 at 01:59 AM
I find it sad he passed away in the cold, he had no where to sleep and it was windy the night before. I saw him many times by the Lucilles in Lake Forest. People were scared of him, however he was actually a nice man. His overwhelming looks frighten shop owners but I saw lots of teenage kids chatting with him. Bless the hearts of the people that reached out to him, R.I.P. Charles.
Martin Henderson (Editor) December 25, 2011 at 06:09 PM
The first time I saw him, I was like, "Whoa! Who is that dude?" I never met him but drove past him several times, and I can honestly say I've never seen anyone in Lake Forest who had such a unique presence. He looked like he belonged in a movie. or a video game. Like many people, it's a shame he was homeless. On Christmas morning, the coroner was still seeking positive identification (beyond the OC Register story); if anyone has any information to provide, the coroner's number is (714) 647-7410.
LEONARD VAN WAGENEN January 29, 2013 at 01:57 AM
anyone of the homeles can identify mr barnes. we all knew him and his name is HOLLYWOOD!!!!!! just ask any el toro homeless. we all knew him. he was a great man...HOLLYWOOD PULL YOUR PANTS DOWN AND TELL EVERYONE WHERE TO GO AND REST IN PEACE MY FRIEND...GLAD I KNEW YOU BROTHER...

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