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Man builds guitar to raise awareness of cystic fibrosis

Published On: Oct 24 2013 06:12:21 PM EDT   Updated On: Oct 24 2013 08:10:05 PM EDT

Justin Jacobs has had a passion for guitars since he was young.


Justin Jacobs has had a passion for guitars since he was young. Now 25, he doesn't only play the guitar, he builds them.

His most recent project has a special purpose. Jacobs calls it a 65 Roses guitar.

"When kids were younger they couldn't pronounce Cystic Fibrosis so they'd say 65 roses or it sounded like that and now they actually use it as a tool to get kids to say it properly," he explained.

With the help of some friends, it took Jacobs a year to design and build the 65 Roses guitar. Much of the work on it was done at Golden Guitar Gallery in Nazareth, where Jacobs spoke to 69 News Thursday.

Jacobs was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis when he was three. It's a life-threatening genetic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system.

"You don't realize how terrible it really is until you get older," said Jacobs. "It's something that slowly wears down on you and eventually catches up with you. It's not curable right now."

Jacobs wants to change that and help find a cure for and raise awareness of Cystic Fibrosis. He has gotten the signatures of many celebrities on guitar tops that he plans to frame and auction off with the 65 Roses guitar. He is trying to line up famous musicians to play at a benefit where he'll auction off the items to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

"When I met Willie Nelson that was really cool," he said.

"Peter Frampton, that was a really good one, I liked him."

"Jay Leno and Kevin Eubanks."

Other celebrity signatures he has include those of Cheech and Chong, Dwight Yoakam, and Slash. He has met many of the big names at Sands Event Center.

"The more awareness we spread about it the better," said Jacobs. "That's who I'm really doing it for, for those who are still alive and those who haven't made it."

You can learn more about Jacobs' story, Cystic Fibrosis, and how you can help on his Facebook page: