Whataburger Made This Grandpa’s Birthday in Mourning Special with Surprise Celebration

As if the burgers weren’t enough to make you fall in love, the staff at an El Paso Whataburger just surprised a Texas man in the best way ever. A proud Texas granddaughter called out the sensitive staff at her grandfather’s favorite casual dining spot for celebrating his first birthday without his late wife. Ed Johnson’s late wife passed away in April of 2016 and since his birthday is in July, this was the first year he was up for celebrating. The staff made sure he did just that.

“The whole thing was a total surprise,” Ed’s granddaughter Emma told Wide Open Eats. “We wanted to take him out for breakfast for his birthday and he loves Whataburger so we went there.”

She says the staff was so excited when he they walked in. They surprised him with cake and balloons and a card signed by the entire staff. For the card, Emma said, “They all wrote him little messages. It was very sweet.”

After Mr. Johnson and his family enjoyed their morning biscuits, they presented him with a giant birthday cake declaring him their #1 customer. They even decorated the cake in iconic orange and yellow Whataburger colors. Birthday balloons decorated the space and everyone posed for a keepsake picture and, most likely, enjoyed a sweet treat for breakfast.

We know what true love is! ? by: @barbacoapparel

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As expected, not everyone was on board with the daily Whata-breakfast saying it was an unhealthy way to start the day. But she was quick to defend her grandfather, saying he has come a long way and deserves his daily treat.

“I don’t support online fighting,” she said. In her mind, this was a really nice gesture by a great staff at a local restaurant and she wasn’t letting anyone take that moment away from them. Her response to the internet nay-sayers:

“Hi, so for those saying he’s not eating healthy, he only started going in the last few months bc of losing his wife, and he has also lost over 40 pounds because of working out and using weight watchers. Where you can eat things like whataburger as long as you stay in your point system. he’s very active and healthy. Whataburger is a place where he goes for comfort and social interaction.”

grandpa-el-paso-whataburger
Twitter: @_emcarr

In the end, it doesn’t matter what internet trolls say. This was a kind gesture from a caring staff, and Emma couldn’t be more grateful to the El Paso Whataburger.

“I thanked them that morning, but just want to say thank you again for taking care of him. We can’t all always be there for him, but it is so nice to know he has people looking out for him.”

There’s nothing like a supportive granddaughter who has her grandpa’s back. Except maybe cake for breakfast. If you haven’t called your grandfather yet, now is probably a good time to do so.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Johnson!

Watch: 10 Food & Drink Innovations to Thank a Texan For