People Are Emotional Over This Dad's Open Letter To Ariana Grande After The Manchester Attack
"Hell, go lick as many freaking donuts as you want. Girl, you deserve it!"
On Monday, a lone suicide bomber detonated a device in the Manchester Arena after an Ariana Grande concert.
In the aftermath, Grande has spoken to fans by tweeting that she is "broken".
On Tuesday, one Grande fan responded with a letter of his own—and it came from a dad whose three daughters have been fans of the singer for some time.
Patrick Millsaps' letter reads: "Dear Miss Grande, I am the father of three daughters — ages 13, 12 & 12. So, you have been a part of our family for years. On occasion, your songs may have stayed on the radio AFTER I have dropped the girls off at school. I will neither confirm nor deny that I have personally seen every episode of Sam and Cat."
His letter continues:
"Since you are a part of our family and after reading a tweet you posted on the Twitter the other night; I’m afraid I need to set you straight girl. So listen up and receive some redneck love from a daddy of daughters."
"#1. You don't have a dadgum thing to apologize for. If some jackass had gotten drunk and killed someone with his car next to your hotel in Manchester, would you feel responsible? If the night before your concert, a tornado had hit Manchester and tragically killed several people who were going to go to your concert, would you feel the need to apologize? You see, you are no more responsible for the actions of an insane coward who committed an evil act in your proximity than you would be for a devastating natural disaster or morons near your hotel. Your text was some stinkin' thinkin' in that regard."
"#2. In your line of work, you have so many experts who are now strategizing what you should do next (I used to be one of those 'experts' when I managed talent). Tell them ALL to go take the powder, give them the month off, and tell them that if they call you within the next 30 days, they are fired! These 'experts' don't have a freaking clue what you are processing right now. Spend time with your God, your family and your friends who will give you space and support when you need it. Hell, go lick as many freaking donuts as you want. Girl, you deserve it!"
"#3. When and only when you are ready, on behalf of all dads who love your… um… whose daughters love your music SING AGAIN. Music is the international language of peace. Every time you open your mouth and share that incredible God-given gift to the world, you make this crappy world a little less crappy."
"So there you go my dear, unsolicited advice from a fat dude in Georgia who loves his daughters and appreciate that there are people like you in the world. Take care of you first. Your fans aren’t going anywhere."
Millsaps' letter meant a lot to Grande's fans:
It had many in tears...
...and made others proud to have people like him around:
"I wrote the letter to Ariana as if she was my daughter," Millsaps told BuzzFeed.
"I wrote that letter at 2:00 a.m. and thought it would be a nice thing to share it with my daughters," he said. "Never in a million years would I think that some tweet of mine would go viral."
"I am humbled that I've had so many responses that were people telling me that it made them smile and gave them hope. That's fantastic," he said.
"But I worry about the attention because I don't want to take one second of coverage from the families who lost...wives and daughters at the hand of a psychopath or from the first responders and police who so quickly secured the area."
Millsaps, a film producer and former attorney, served as the chief of staff on Newt Gingrich's 2012 presidential campaign. The father of three daughters —Morgan (13), Alison (12), and Kendall (12) — lives in a small town in South Georgia.
He said that he wanted to write something to show his own daughters "we can not live in fear and we must use the gifts God gives us everyday."
"This story is not about Ariana or me," he said. "It's about families who lost their children at the hands of a psychopath."