Homeless Man’s Life Completely Turns Around After Video of Playing Piano Goes Viral
In the world of the internet, a scandal can spread quicker than you can click “private” on your Facebook settings. But the opposite can be true as well. In what seems like the blink of an eye, fame and fortune can come to those who struggle or have made mistakes in their lives. The latter was the case when a homeless piano man was caught on video and it was shared to YouTube. It changed his life forever.
Donald Gould was a homeless man living on the streets of Florida, but things weren’t always this way. Gould is a former U.S. Marine Corps member. He studied music education in Michigan. But in 1998, tragedy changed his life forever.
That year, Gould’s wife died after a short battle with cancer. He became depressed and turned to drugs and alcohol, resulting in a severe addiction problem. Soon, he would lose custody of his 3-year-old son.
For years, Gould had roamed the streets of Sarasota, Florida, directionless and broke. But his life would forever change on one summer day in 2015, when he happened to come across a community piano in the city’s downtown district. Gould sat and began to play. Watch the incredible video.
Perhaps one of the best parts of the video is the man smoking a cigarette. He’s completely speechless watching Gould play.
One passerby who captured Gould playing a gorgeous rendition of “Come Sail Away” by Styx uploaded the video to YouTube. Once online, it became a viral sensation, receiving hundreds of thousands — and then millions — of views. Gould became an overnight sensation. He couldn’t believe what would happen next.
A GoFundMe page was set up in order to get Gould some money to get off the street. Within hours it had surpassed its goal. Within days, more than $40,000 had been raised.
Gould’s first step to turning his life around was entering rehab. He has not looked back since. Michigan’s Spring Arbor University, where Gould had completed all but a few credits toward his degree in music, offered him a full scholarship to return. And best of all, Gould finally reconnected with his son.
“I’m living the dream right now,” Gould told ABC’s WWSB in Sarasota.
Though Gould’s story is several years old, it continues to inspire people to this day. It’s a reminder to anyone who is listening: Hope is always right around the corner. Be sure to SHARE this heartwarming and inspirational story with all of your friends.