The Story Behind This New Bedford Teen Who Went Viral Over His Love for Donuts
If you're looking for a feel-good story about a young man and his love for donuts, you've come to the right place.
Little did 13-year-old Brayden Aguiar realize that he would quickly become an overnight superstar from taking a photo enjoying one of his favorite donuts.
Every Sunday morning, Brayden and his mom Hildie Aguiar take a trip to Grandma's Donuts & Coffee on Acushnet Ave in New Bedford. They arrive between 8:00-8:30 AM and unlike most people who stand in line to take home their donuts, Brayden and his family enjoy dining in.
"He looks forward to his morning donuts on the weekends," Hildie said, "He likes the ones with frosting and m&m's on it. That's his favorite."
The Aguiars became friends with the Lemieux family (owners of Grandma's Donuts) when The Boat Restaurant Seafood and More were open on Ashley Boulevard.
"When they re-opened the donut shop back in 2021, I helped them deliver donuts to their customers who ordered online," Hildie explained, "They're good friends of ours."
Brayden has been a student over at the Meeting Street Schwartz School for the last 6-7 years and is diagnosed with down syndrome and autism. Something as simple as going out for donuts means the world to him and he sure knows how to light up a room.
"When he was born, they told us that he was a 'failure to thrive' at a younger age and was given a g-tube to eat," Hildie explained, "His drink has to be thickened to a honey consistency and he can only consume soft solids (like a donut). Other than that he gets most of his meals from his g-tube."
Back on Sunday, January 22nd, Brayden took a proud picture wearing his favorite Shrek hat and enjoying his morning donuts. Grandma's Donuts was permitted to post the photo of Brayden smiling ear to ear and just like that he became a local superstar overnight.
"I could not believe it," Hildie said, "I was watching it hit 1,000 likes and then it kept going. I couldn't believe my eyes!"
One week later and Brayden had gained over 200,000 likes, a whopping 3,000 plus comments, and more than 1,000 shares on Facebook.
From customer to celebrity, Brayden now has another great reason to do what he loves the most- eating some donuts.
Keep smiling, buddy, you're famous!