ANDERSON, SC (WLTX) - On February 8, Laura Dorn shared a deeply personal video on Facebook, mostly for her family see, with no idea how many people would see and be touched by it.
You see, the scene she captured was that of her father leaving his home in Anderson -- for the very last time.
Dorn says her father, Douglas Timmons, was a hard-working man and a great dad with an infectious smile. She says the Kershaw County native was a kind and sweet man, who loved playing with his grandkids. After all, she says, "he was a big kid himself."
After serving in the U.S. Air Force, Dorn says her father worked his way up into supervisory roles in the textile business and eventually retired after 42 years. Sadly, Timmons began to struggle with Alzheimer's Disease when he was around 70-years-old. By this time, Timmons had lived in Rock Hill for some 40 years and then in Greer.
"He was a humble man, said Dorn. "Everyone who come to know him loved him."
It was no different at Richard M. Campbell Veterans Nursing Home in Anderson, where he had gone to live when he needed more care, approximately three and a half years ago.
Dorn says Campbell Veterans Nursing Home was an amazing place for her father to spend his last few years as he continued to battle Alzheimer's Disease. "During the day, the halls would be lined with residents and staff," Dorn recalled. And, that sets the scene for the video Dorn posted.
Dorn says a local funeral home had come around 5 a.m. to take her father until her funeral home in Rock Hill could get there. In the video, you see staff from Sullivan King Funeral Home and Campbell Nursing Home wheeling Mr. Timmons' flag-draped casket down the hallway, with Taps playing in the background. And then, a brief pause for all to pay their respects.
While few were awake or around at the time, those who came to honor Timmons. If you look closely on the left, you can see another resident has wheeled himself out of his room so very early to pay his respects to his friend. "Even at 5 a.m., with the few people that were available, they still honored him on his way out," Dorn said.
As you might guess, the video went viral in quick order. Just five days later, the video has been seen more than 6.5 million times, shared nearly 150,000 times and has more than 72,000 reactions.
"We are blown away at how fast this has spread over the world, not just the states!" says Dorn. All day, I sign releases for the story, she said. The New York Times and the Washington Post are just two of the many media outlets sharing the story.
"So, I have messages coming in from England, Scotland, Pakistan and all over, said Dorn. "People are sharing their condolences and stories and well wishes with us."
When asked what her father would think of all the attention, Dorn said, "He wouldn't believe it. Then, he would just be tickled. Very happy."
We asked Laura Dorn why she thinks the video went viral, what about it has touched so many people that they've shared the video, too.
"I believe that there is so much negative out there -- with our military and our vets and treatment and such -- that something honorable such as that, touched heartstrings," she said. "It helped people know that there is still honor and dignity."
With that, we think it's safe to say that Douglas Timmons is indeed 'very happy' with the all the attention the video has received.
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