A Mississippi State fan gave his Alzheimer's-stricken father the perfect baseball gift

Yahoo Sports
Matt Lea decided to surprise his dad, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s, with tickets and a road trip to see Mississippi State play in the College World Series. (Twitter/@tigr2ndbase)
Matt Lea decided to surprise his dad, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s, with tickets and a road trip to see Mississippi State play in the College World Series. (Twitter/@tigr2ndbase)

Matt Lea, a lifelong Mississippi State fan, decided to give his father the surprise of a lifetime for Father’s Day. Matt’s father has Alzheimer’s, and Matt wanted to give him a gift that would be hard to forget. And with Mississippi State playing in the College World Series in Omaha, which kicks off on Saturday, he found the perfect gift.

So Matt drove 12 hours across Florida to surprise his dad. And before he walked through the door to his parents’ house, he flipped on his camera to record the whole wonderful interaction.

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“Shoot. Hallelujah. You’re gonna break my heart here.” Matt’s dad was touched and shocked and overwhelmed by his son’s incredible gift. And Matt was really excited to get on the road.


The next day, the father and son embarked on their long road trip to Omaha. By then, the video of Matt surprising his father had gone viral, which resulted in people offering to help pay for their trip. But this trip wasn’t about money. Matt tweeted that he’d rather that money be donated to Alzheimer’s causes.


It’s a long trip from Florida to Omaha, and Matt was able to grab a few pictures along the way.


Unfortunately, neither were able to grab any pictures of the hailstorm they drove through in Missouri. But Matt tweeted something even better — a picture of his dad back when he played baseball for Mississippi State.


The duo started on the final leg of their trip on Friday morning, and made it by the afternoon.



Matt and his dad will only be able to be there for the opening weekend, but they’ll be able to catch their team on Saturday night when Mississippi State takes on Washington. No matter what happens during that game, Matt and his dad are making important memories, and having a once-in-a-lifetime experience together.

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Liz Roscher is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at lizroscher@yahoo.com or follow her on Twitter at @lizroscher.

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