WAVERLY, Ohio (WCMH) — When the national anthem wouldn’t play during a high school basketball game, one dad stepped up and stood up, singing a rendition of the beloved song that had many people in the gym in tears.
Basketball dad Trenton Brown is from a military family, and he loves to sing. So when the audio broke as the kids stood saluting the flag at the game between Waverly and Portsmouth West, Trenton’s wife nudged him to fill the awkward pause.
“There were some technical difficulties and they couldn’t get the music to play,” said Brown in a Zoom interview. “Finally my wife kinda nudged me and said, ‘Just sing it,’ and so I started singing and that was it.”
Trenton’s friend Johnny Futhey grabbed his camera and started taking video of the powerful moment. “I fumbled for my phone and got it,” said Futhey, a parent who also photographs sports for the area high schools.
Futhey put the video on Facebook and had 11 million views a day later. His wife opened a TikTok account, and the video rapidly clocked up 2.5 million views from nothing, and about 8,000 followers — and climbing.
“He belted it out and you could hear it clear across the gym. Everyone was singing softly with him,” Futhey said, adding that many people were crying.
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Futhey, who says he’s been involved in sports all his life.