Dad and Son at Mall

The Houck family loves to make Jacob laugh.

As CBS Philly reports, 21-year-old Jacob Houck was diagnosed with Atypical Teratoid Rhabdoid Tumor when he was only 3. The rare brain tumor is often fatal, and many sufferers die by age 2.

Jacob, however, survived, and his family has learned to appreciate life and make the most of every moment. Over the years, Jacob’s three brothers have made it a family game to engage in goofy antics, trying to get a laugh out of him. This weekend at the mall, Dad decided to get give it a try.

You guys, my night was made tonight by a man who is such a great father. He came into Buckle and said “Hey can I ask a…

Posted by Nicole Prodin on Saturday, November 24, 2018

Rich Houck approached the assistant manager at a Buckle store and asked if he could stand in their front window to make Jacob smile. The manager, Nicole Prodin, gave permission, then shared the story on Facebook with Rich’s permission:

You guys, my night was made tonight by a man who is such a great father. He came into Buckle and said “Hey can I ask a favor? My son has special needs and I wanna make him laugh, I’d like to pose in your window, if possible, we just did it over at Hollister!” At first I was puzzled but I figured, why not?

So Rich stood in the window as Jacob passed by, striking funny poses to the delight of his son. Then Jacob got in on the action, joining his dad to pose in the store’s Christmas display.

The father-son antics inevitably attracted the attention of passers-by. As Prodin wrote:

The whole mall was stopping to watch the action and it clearly didn’t just make my entire night.

Rich told CBS that he, “was surprised,” to see the big reaction from other shoppers at the mall.

But in the end, it was all about his son. Rich says that their experience with Jacob has been a reminder that, “every day is a new day.” That’s why it’s so important to enjoy their time together as a family. He told CBS:

“He’s not supposed to be here. We are enjoying every day we got with him.”

It might not have been his goal, but Rich’s philosophy made a big impact on those around him. As Prodin wrote on Facebook while urging others to share the video, “They were such a sweet family and I was honored to get to capture this.”

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One Reply to “Dad Asks Manager to Use Store Window to Make Special Needs Son Laugh. He Cheers up Everyone at the Mall”

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    This father is great and to do something like this he gets “Father of the year” award

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