Matt Goodman recently turned 21 years old and got his first proper drink at a bar, a bittersweet celebration because his father was usually there to help ring in every important memory of his life. Each and every birthday party, sports game, or sad moment where he needed a pep talk, Matt's father, John, was there to support him.
But six years ago, Matt sadly lost his biggest fan and supporter. John Goodman passed away due to esophageal cancer.
Because he had always been there for his son's biggest moments, it would only make sense that he'd be at the bar with the young man to purchase him his first legal beer. So, without telling Matt, John left a surprise $10 to be used for the sole purpose of buying his first-ever drink. It's a secret that Matt's mom and sister kept from the young man for years, and finally revealed it to him on his 21st birthday.
"Knowing that he thought about a future big moment in my life meant everything, because even being gone he still did whatever he could to make my 21st birthday. It was probably the best present I've ever gotten. Not having him around has obviously been the toughest thing in my life since he was my best friend. He was a huge goofball that would do anything in the world to make me happy."
Matt shared the story on Twitter where it racked up a massive 27,000 retweets. He capped it off by writing, "Cheers pops havin' this one for you!"
It didn't take long for businesses to see the heartwarming story and decide to go and let Matt know that they had his back as well. Budweiser saw the tweet and covered Matt's next drink. Well, his next 192 ones.
"We're raising one to your pops, Matt. He got your first beer and the next one's on us," Budweiser wrote in response to Matt's original tweet. Matt posed next to the eight cases of beer Budweiser sent him which were stacked in front of the family Christmas tree and festive stockings.
After more and more people caught wind of Matt's story, they wanted to wish him a happy birthday themselves and began looking for the young man on Venmo to send him a cash birthday surprise.
Matt expressed his gratitude for the money but urged folks to send money to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute for all of the work that they did to help his father towards the end of his life.
Nice move, Matt. You’re dad taught you well during the time you did have with him. Heartbreaking but awesome story. I lost my dad young too😘— mkhayes (@mkhayes5) December 21, 2020
From that tweet alone, it looks like Matt's parents, including his departed dad, did a pretty great job of helping to raise a young man with a good head on his shoulders. And it seems like there's a ton of other people, at least on social media, who agree that thoughtfulness runs in the family - they were floored that Matt would, instead of taking their money, redirect them to the hospital instead.
Making a donation in you and your Dads honor now, how incredible of you to direct people there ♥️— Martha Ho (@MarthaHo17) December 21, 2020
hi Matt! I'm a senior editor at Newsweek. I sent you a DM! Let me know your thoughts. Many thanks.— Jenny Haward (@JennyHaward84) December 16, 2020