Ted Williams, a homeless US man with a deep, refined voice has become an overnight online sensation after being “discovered” by a local reporter on a street corner in Columbus, Ohio. The 53 year-old has now been offered a job by the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers and is being pursued by NFL Films for possible work. Williams said the team had offered him a two-year contract and said they would pay his living expenses. Williams was recently living in a tent and whose past includes a lengthy list of arrests. He has served time in prison for theft and forgery and has been cited with numerous misdemeanors, including drug abuse. In New York, Williams’ mother Julia was thrilled her only child was turning his life around.
This ascent is most likely due in no small part to the , which took up the cause after Reddit user and Columbus-dweller “shiggiddie” posted the video to the site after hearing about the interview on a local radio show.
“I had already seen the immense good the Reddit community is capable of doing,” shiggiddie says. “I hoped that maybe through the community I might find out who this Ted Williams character is, and how we might be able to help him get on his feet with some work other redditors might want/need for their businesses, etc.”
The results were overwhelming: “I received anywhere from 70 to 80 job offers for Ted in my personal messages alone over the past day and a half, some coming from people claiming to represent the interests of nationwide radio programs, television shows, businesses looking for someone to do their voice systems, ads, ads and more ads, musicians wanting Ted to contribute his voice to their tracks, and even radio hosts wanting him to join their shows as a full-time jockey,” shiggiddie says.
“I haven’t even gotten to the news sources asking me for more information, of which I’d guess I received personal messages from at least 20 to 25.”
The video spread from boards like Reddit to viral culture blogs, leading to appearances on major news outlets — from print to to television.