After a snowfall last week, a St. Paul man thought he'd shovel the walk of a neighbor who was out of town.
But he was too late. Richard Mann was just finishing the job.
Mann is 101 years. old.
The neighbor was so impressed by Mann, he went out and videotaped a short interview with him – telling Mann what an inspiration he is – and posted it to Facebook.
Well, Facebook user Keven Lifecoach O'Bannon is apparently not alone in being impressed by Mr. Mann. Because a week after it was posted, the video has been watched more than a million times.
The image of Mann grinning shyly from under his purple Vikings hat as he leans on his shovel has been shown by The Weather Channel, People Magazine, CNN's Headline News, and many local news shows around the country.
WCCO paid a visit to Mann, who explained that when he was four his father died and – being the only boy in the family – certain chores just fell to him. Evidently, some of them still seem to be automatic for him nearly a century later.
Why is the video of him so popular? His daughter Margo Mann tells WCCO it has to do with kindness: "... because there are so many things going on that are not, you know, people are not being kind to each other. And kindness is the key to having a successful and good life.”
We already know that people around the country associate Minnesota with snow. We could do worse than to have them associate the snow with people like Richard Mann.