Suicidal as a teen, this man says he is alive, happy and healthy today thanks to Danny DeVito. The man says the actor listened to him when when no one else would. And as a troubled teen it made a lasting impression.
This man shared the personal story of how a chance encounter with the actor Danny DeVito on a ski lift ended up saving his life. The actor listened to him when he needed to be heard the most.
Responding to a reddit thread highlighting the kindness of actor Danny DeVito, the man shared his personal story of how he ended up meeting the actor, unaware of who he was. The man explains how he was 13 years old and seriously contemplating suicide because of the abuse he had suffered, but worse still was the fact that no one in his family believed him. His story caught a lot of attention, including that of DeVito’s longtime collaborator and friend, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
MisterSeeDee recounts on reddit:
“Danny DeVito is a good man.
“So as a boy I went to a boarding school where horrible abuse was taking place. Although nothing was exposed while I attended (unfortunately), the school was broken up just a few years later and faculty members were arrested. The experiences there seriously affected me and I was asking for help the entire time but I was never believed, which made me feel exceptionally isolated and alone. I was being abused but my own family wouldn’t take my word on it.”
“I was allowed to go home for Christmas and my family went on a ski vacation to Utah. This would be around 1992. I tried to explain what was happening and how miserable I was but again, nobody would believe me or understand my situation. I was suicidal and planning how I could end my life without anybody discovering me or having to deal with the shame of a failed attempt.
“…until one day I was riding a ski lift to the top of the mountain, and I met a strangely familiar sounding man with a scarf over his face. He saw that I was miserable and asked me what was wrong.
“I didn’t have any trouble opening up about my problems at thirteen. I would blab on and on about them (the problem is that nobody really cared). So I unloaded on this poor guy.
“He was the first person who had really noticed the pain I was feeling. My family all thought it was an act to ‘manipulate’ them into letting me come home, but this stranger saw that what I was experiencing was real. He had true genuine compassion for me, and as he explained further, I began to understand why.
“He told me that he had a very similar experience when he was younger, that he had gone to a very strict Catholic boarding school. He shared some experiences with me. He understood what I was going through completely. He told me that it would pass; that one day I would be an adult and all of these things would seem very far away. I cried, he told me everything would be alright. I talked to him the entire way up the mountain.
This is the moment I decided to not be suicidal anymore. I lived my entire existence after that point trying to get to that safe adult vantage point that the stranger described to me. I wanted to be like him; alive, whole, and on the other side. Free.”
“Anyway, as we got to the top of the hill, I saw the stranger’s wife come up to him and recognized her. It was the girl from Cheers (Rhea Pearlman)! And then I placed the voice – Danny DeVito, who I had seen in several movies even by the then, but just couldn’t identify on the ski lift.
“Everything he said was true. I went on to great things. And all of those horrors seem small in comparison even if they do trouble me sometimes.
“Reddit, Danny DeVito saved my life. This is not a Bill Murrey ‘nobody will ever believe you’ story – this really happened and changed the course of my history. Danny DeVito saw my misery, talked to me like a real human being, and helped me see that I would survive these horrible events. I will always remember what he did for me.
“I want to thank him personally. If anybody can help me get a hand-written note to mister DeVito, or a phone call, please contact me. I don’t want to pitch Hollywood scripts or gush over his work. I just want to thank him for being a human being, and being there. Unfortunately he’s famous as hell and has no idea who I am so it’s proven very, very hard.
“Anybody who can help me, please contact my inbox. I’m not a Reddit Guru so if you know a better subreddit or something to get attention on this, please let me know as well. Thanks for listening.”
His request to have someone help him be thank Mr. DeVito personally did not fall on deaf ears as his post came to the attention of Arnold Schwarzenegger. The actor responded, “What an incredible story. Thank you for sharing. You’re right – Danny is a good man (one of the best), and I know he will love to hear that some of his advice helped you become a great man, although I can tell you always had it in you. I’m going to send this to him so he can see it.”
MisterSeeDee politely responded, “I very much appreciate this sir, I hope he enjoys hearing about his impact. Thank you for your attention!”
What an amazing story. I’m so glad that this man met someone who listened to him when he needed it most. It’s a powerful reminder that sometimes reaching out to a stranger, especially a child, can have more impact than you know. Share this story if you were as touched by it as we were.