A Tennessee Boy Was Bullied at School — Then Something Wonderful Happened

A Tennessee boy’s sad tale of being tormented at the hands of middle school bullies went viral over the weekend and the support that is pouring in for him from all across America — including some very high places — is enough to restore your faith in humanity and warm the cockles of your heart.

Kimberly Jones posted a heartbreaking video on Facebook Friday of her son Keaton talking about the bullying he’s had to endure at Horace Maynard Middle School in Maynardville, Tenn., and the post prompted a wave of support from athletes, entertainers and even the son of the president.

Jones said that she had to pick Keaton up from school that day “again” because he was too afraid to go to lunch.

“We all know how it feels to want to belong, but only a select few know how it really feels not to belong anywhere,” she wrote.

“They make fun of my nose. They call me ugly. They say I have no friends,” Keaton told his mom in the video while tears rolled down his cheeks.  “Why do they bully? What’s the point of it?”

Kimberly asked what they did to him at lunch. “Poured milk on me and put hands down my clothes, threw food at me,” Keaton cried.

The video is tough to watch.

The video now has over 21 million views and support for Keaton has been rolling in from the political, entertainment and sports worlds.

Actor Chris Evans invited Keaton to next year’s Los Angeles premiere of Avengers: Infinity War:

Twenty-year-old actress Hailee Steinfeld asked Keaton out on a date. “I would love you — Keaton Jones — to be my date for the Pitch Perfect III premiere on Tuesday and if you would like to go, D.M. me so we can start planning your trip!” Steinfeld proposed in a video she posted on Twitter.  “I hope to see you there,” she added, blowing him a kiss.

Some of the most heartwarming thoughts and prayers poured in from the sports world.

Tennessee Titans tight end Delanie Walker invited the Jones family to an upcoming game:

And University of Tennessee wide receiver Tyler Byrd said he and some of his teammates would be visiting Keaton at school.

Light Heavyweight Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) champ Daniel Cormier also had some very kind and encouraging words:

Former Green Bay Packer Bernard Baker shared this incredibly sweet message on Twitter:

Tennessee quarterback Jarrett Guarantano tried to get in touch with the boy’s family on Saturday because “Keaton has some friends on the football team that would love to spend some time with him.”

Guarantano was a star football player at Bergen Catholic high school in Northern New Jersey before graduating in 2016.

The big-hearted quarterback was able to make the connection with the Jones family and spent the day with Keaton on Sunday. He posed for a photo with his “new best bud” and posted it on Twitter.

UFC owner Dana White invited Keaton and his family to Las Vegas and “hang out at UFC Headquarters.”

Seeing that, Donald Trump Jr. offered Keaton and his family a place to stay in Las Vegas should they decide to take White up on his offer.

It looks like young Keaton’s social calendar is going to be filled for the next few weeks. But even better than that, I suspect his classmates have gotten the message and his days of being bullied are pretty much over. Keaton, without a doubt, has the coolest friends at school.

And if he decides to take White up on his offer to go to Las Vegas and check out the UFC, perhaps he’ll pick up some useful self-defense tricks, too.