EUSTIS, Fla. – Ever since the coronavirus pandemic began, birthday celebrations have had to be canceled or changed.
For two parents in Eustis, their creativity brought together a community of truck drivers and caring strangers, to celebrate their son’s fifth birthday.
"It was really incredible to see people that we didn't know-making signs and some brought gifts for him," Mark Donohue said.
The original plan was to take his son Ethan to a Monster Jam event in Orlando but the event was canceled due to COVID-19.
Donohue and his wife felt it would be a good idea to post on Facebook about getting together with some friends and their trucks and give Ethan a surprise.
What the family didn’t know, is that his post would be shared by others.
On Tuesday, April 28th, almost fifty trucks, including one from the local fire station, lined up and drove past the Donohue’s home. They even showed up with a monster truck-size birthday cake.
"It just shows that even in times of crisis we can all band together," Mark said. "It kind of restores faith in humanity. They'll never know how much of a blessing it was for him."
Ethan’s mom says she wishes she knew who those people were so she could send them thank you cards.
“I’m very grateful that somebody would come out and celebrate my sweet boy when we couldn’t do what we planned,” Jennie Donohue said. “The field was full of trucks and I just-- I didn’t know and they came just to celebrate him. There’s no words to describe what that means to me that somebody would help make his day that special.”
Among the drivers that joined in on the celebration was, Colby Raley.
He says he did the drive-by during his break from work.
"The truck community is a tight-knit group. Some of the trucks that showed were such high caliber, they were literal monster trucks, I mean, I'm just glad We were able to do it," Raley said.
It was a birthday celebration little Ethan will never forget.
“Last night when we were going to bed, he said: ‘mom, this was just day 1 of being 5’ I thought yeah bud, that’s a really good point,” Jennie said.