Having a second chance to make things right doesn’t always end happily, but one homeless veteran in Sarasota, Florida is embracing his chance for a new beginning.
Donald Gould, an apparent piano prodigy, caught the attention of the world less than two weeks ago after a Youtube video of him playing Styx’s “Come Sail Away” began circulating online.
Nabbing more than 9 million views on the site, offers to help Gould began to generously pour in.
Donald has now been placed in temporary housing and awarded a full scholarship to finish his degree at Sprint Arbor University, in addition to the $40,000 that has been raised from a GoFundMe page to help him “get back on track to his true potential,” reports People.
Gould, who played clarinet in the U.S. Marine Corps, had a dream to become a music teacher in his once bright future.
He says he was three semesters shy of graduation before his world came tumbling down many years ago.
His studies were cut short because he was no longer able to afford tuition, and he he eventually dropped out of school.
Gould says he worked a series of jobs before starting a family and later developing an addiction to both drugs and alcohol.
Donald’s son, Donny, was taken away from him by social services when he was 3 years old, and his wife committed suicide.
Donny was eventually adopted by a family from Michigan at age 5.
“There’s not a day that’s gone by since they took him from me that I haven’t thought about him,” Gould told Florida’s WFLA,” adding that he hoped Donny’s adoptive family would see his video.
Donny, who is now 18, saw the video and said he wants to help his birth father get his life back together.
“I thought [his music] was very beautiful,” Donny told Inside Edition. “I just want to help him clean up his act.”
Donny was able to reconnect with his father through video chat, saying “It was very weird for me to see that face for the very first time.”
Gould has reportedly checked into a rehab facility where he is receiving treatment for his addictions.
The Marine veteran hopes to regain the thing that matters to him most upon his exit from therapy, which is a relationship with his son.