How Success Kid Used His Viral Meme To Save Dad’s Life


For most of us the internet could be a forum where people tend to be rude, sarcastic and cynical. But at times the internet proves that it has a human side to it too.

The story of Sammy Griner, a 10-year old from Jacksonville, Florida is one such example. Sammy became famous when a baby picture of him clenching his fist and scrunching lips was posted online in 2007. This photo of him became a series of memes on the internet and he was dubbed the ‘Success Kid.’

Sam’s father Justin was suffering from kidney failure and has been on dialysis since 2009. The medical expenses were mounting and it got to a situation where his dad needed a kidney transplant.

The family had to find a donor and raise at least $75,000 for the operation. Justin’s wife Laney set up a ‘GoFundMe’ campaign in a bid to try and raise funds online. They also contacted a few websites that were fans of the ‘Success Kid.’

When people found out that it was the father of the ‘Success Kid,’ the Griner’s managed to raise more than $100,000 in just a week. Justin underwent a successful transplant operation in 2015. The online response was truly overwhelming and Justin has thanked the World Wide Web for saving his life.

Sammy says that he is not interested in becoming famous anymore, but is glad that his viral meme helped save his dad’s life.


The Meme That Made The Difference

Success Kid 10-Years Later

A photo posted by Laney Griner (@laneymg) on

The Family After Operation Success

A photo posted by Laney Griner (@laneymg) on