Stop the unfair treatment of John Letnik and Captain John's Restaurant
  • Petitioned The City of Toronto, Waterfront Toronto, The Toronto Port Authority

This petition was delivered to:

The City of Toronto, Waterfront Toronto, The Toronto Port Authority

Stop the unfair treatment of John Letnik and Captain John's Restaurant

    1. Petition by

      Friends of John Letnik

In an unprecedented and cruel move the City of Toronto shut off the water supply to Captain John’s Harbour Boat Restaurant. With no water supply, the City’s Health Department ordered that the restaurant be shut down. This cut off all cash flow and shut down the financial life blood of the owner John Letnik.

While led by the City of Toronto, this action was part of what appears to be an orchestrated plan by the various government agencies fighting for control over development of Toronto’s waterfront lands and are determined to squeeze out anyone they have decided should not be there.

After escaping from Communist controlled Yugoslavia at the age of 15 in 1956, John Letnik immigrated to Canada. When he opened his floating restaurant known as Captain John’s in 1970 it was one of the first attractions on the downtown Toronto water front and became a landmark. For more than forty years John Letnik has served as an exemplary citizen and displayed generous public behavior by providing free meals to Toronto’s less fortunate and needy. Now he is being kicked to the curb.

It’s a cruel irony that John Letnik escapes a Communist oppressive regime as a young man, finds freedom in Canada and works hard to achieve success …… and now ends up being treated like this.

This treatment is a disgrace and standing by and doing nothing to help him is unconscionable.

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 500 signatures
    2. We would like to see a "Knock-Out".

      Friends of John Letnik
      Petition Organizer

      We have a world class fighter in our corner for support.

      The great Canadian heavy weight boxer George Chuvalo supports the cause and has signed our petition.

      Please spread the word and help us secure more support.

      Thank you .... Friends of Captain John

    3. You have to see this!

      Friends of John Letnik
      Petition Organizer

      This is a short documentary about Captain John Letnik.

      The film was made before the City of Toronto and the "powers that be" that are fighting for control of the waterfront lands shut down Captain John's Harbour Boat Restaurant.

      Titled "Unsinkable", the film is directed by Rich Williamson of Squire Entertainment and is a finalist in the International Documentary Challenge.

      It reveals a lot.

      Unsinkable || DOC CHALLENGE

      Unsinkable goes on board a floating restaurant that has been a Toronto landmark for over 40 years, to reveal a charming old man with a lifelong passion for his boat, decades of selfless community

    4. Please read the recent article and view the video about Captain John.

      Friends of John Letnik
      Petition Organizer
      "Captain" John vows to go down with his ship

      Almost six months after the city shut down Captain John's Restaurant, its 74-year-old owner is living on board in squalor and vowing to go down with his rusting ship. John Letnik has been slowly dismantling anything of value from his beloved Jadran and still spends some nights sleeping on the carpet in his Captain's Quarters.

    5. Reached 250 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • damjana kerčmar MURSKA SOBOTA, SLOVENIA
      • 9 months ago

      I used to work in the restaurant in 2004 - one of the best summers in my life!

    • Dewitt Lee TORONTO, CANADA
      • 10 months ago

      Because it's a beautiful piece of Toronto history.

    • Elias Giampuranis DOLLARD-DES-ORMEAUX, CANADA
      • 10 months ago

      the ship is historical must be preserved

    • Mary Spanopoulos SOUTH LYON, MI
      • 11 months ago

      Stop the unfair treatment of John

      Letnik and Captain John's


    • Arjun Sahota TORONTO, CANADA
      • about 1 year ago

      As a youth living in the City of Toronto, this boat provides Toronto with a beautiful waterfront image which I'm afraid will soon be lost to glass/metal buildings..


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