Mission Coun. Ken Herar has often joked that he looks like ’70s television star Erik Estrada, and it appears as if at least one person agrees with him – Erik Estrada himself.
Herar turned 54 on May 31 and one of his most surprising presents was a birthday video message from Estrada, the former star of the television show CHiPs which ran from 1977 to 1983.
“A lot of people used to call me Ponch (Estrada’s character name of CHiPs) when I was younger. I always took it as a compliment because he was a popular star,” said Herar.
The video came about thanks to Herar’s friend Bob Soltis who works in the music business.
“He just knew somebody who knew somebody,” Herar said.
Unlike some star messages where you have to pay a fee, Estrada (who does have an account on Cameo - the message from the stars website) did the message as a favour after being told about Herar, his similar appearance and his work on Cycling4Diversity.
“Bob thought he (Estrada) would do a 10-15 second message, but he did almost two minutes,” said Herar.
In his message, Estrada jokes with Herar saying “I hear the only reason you got elected to Mission City Council was because you look like me.”
Estrada also commented on Herar’s work in the community and his stance to fight against racism and bullying. He also complimented his work on the Cycling4Diversity program before ending his message with a rendition of Happy Birthday.
“I was really honoured to receive such a kind message,” said Herar.
He said he was shocked when he saw the message on his Facebook account, but it was a thrill.
Here is a link to the Facebook video: