PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — George Dowling’s daughter, Suzan, made what she thought was a small request back in 2014: “Please send my father a Christmas card.”

Since then, the family has continued that tradition every year, posting on social media asking everyone to send a card to George. But they had no idea just how big that small request would get.

That post got shared all over Facebook and eventually TikTok where it got hundreds of thousands of views and shares.

“My daughter came home and she said, ‘mom, poppy, I think is going viral,'” Brito recalled. “I said I don’t know what that means, so then she explained it to me. And at the point where she told me there were 39,000 people.”

Within three days, George had received nearly 500 cards, as well as gifts from people all over the world.

 “It just blew up,” Brito said. “I never expected anything like this at all.”

Local organizations saw the social media posts and have been gathering cards to send to George, including 68 cards from the Darlington Early Childhood Center in Pawtucket.

The family says they are overwhelmed by the outpouring of love that they have already received.

If you’d like to send George a card, his address is:

64 Harris St.
Pawtucket, RI 02861