The mother of a young boy who went viral earlier this week because no one showed up to his birthday party has responded to claims that the heartbreaking photo was fake.
6-year-old Teddy’s mum Sil Mazzini invited 32 of his school friends to a pizza party at a Peter Piper Pizza restaurant, but none of them ended up going according to Sil.
The family, from Tucson, Arizona, has been accused of staging the photo as a publicity stunt after Teddy was offered numerous VIP experiences by celebrities who felt sorry for him.
Here’s his cute thank you video to everyone who wished him happy birthday:
His parents said they would never stage such a deflating event for their son and never meant for the sad photo to go viral, according to TMZ.
It should have been a day of fun and pizza, but instead poor Teddy was left eating alone, the sight of his brave little face fighting disappointment broke the Internet’s heart.
His mother admits she had already been warned by some other parents that their kids couldn’t make it, but she had no idea there would be absolutely no guests present at all.
Sil told ABC15 ‘I’m done with parties for a while.’ This was reportedly said jokingly, but it would be completely understandable if this was indeed the case.
As reported by Fox 10, Sil had made up 32 goodie bags for Teddy’s classmates; each containing a party invite. She had even spoken to some parents the day before the party who said their kids would be going.
The tearjerking photograph went viral after being shared by Tucson reporter Nick VinZant alongside the following message:
If you get a chance please wish Teddy a Happy Birthday. His mom sent me this after his friends weren’t able to make it to his birthday party.
Fortunately, numerous happy returns for the day have poured in for little Teddy from far and wide, with many well-wishers offering words of support and even presents for the young boy.
Teddy was proposed a gift of a free ride in a ‘mouse limo’ from a local exterminator – with the promise of ‘extra goodies’ – while others offered hugs and kind words.
Many considerate people could remember all too well their own first few early disappointments, with one person advising:
Once you realise happiness is from the inside stuff like this won’t hurt so bad. Wish I’d known I’d have made the drive to see you. Happy birthday lil fella.
Happy Birthday Teddy! People are flaky and inconsiderate sometimes. It happens, that doesn’t mean you aren’t great, just that people are silly. Best wishes kiddo!
— (x)-Phoenix Rising FC (@PHXRisingFC) October 22, 2018
Perhaps most excitingly of all, basketball team The Phoenix Suns tweeted Teddy with the offer of free tickets to their game against the Lakers, tweeting:
How about we celebrate with thousands at our place! Tickets to Wednesday’s #SunsVSLakers game are all yours Teddy! Talk soon!
Sil told UNILAD:
We want to thank all the community for the birthday wishes and the love. We are truly overwhelmed.
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