From Grimwade to Musto
George Grimwade is a 22-year-old senior offensive lineman on the Bulldogs football team at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. When George was in fifth grade, his mom, Michelle, married Michael Musto. She became, Mrs. Musto and George became his stepson. Keep reading for the significance of her new last name, and this Ocean Reef family’s love, acceptance and football.
From the very beginning, George and Michael bonded, especially over football. George had not had a father figure in his life so having his stepfather to guide him and share his passion was truly a blessing.
Fast forward to now, Michael is simply known as George’s dad, no “step” necessary, and George wanted to make a grand gesture to show his father just how much he meant to him.
“I decided to change my last name because my stepdad – which sounds weird calling him my stepdad because he’s always been dad to me – he doesn’t have anyone to carry on his last name,” said George in a video to his father that has now gone viral. “He raised me ever since I was in second grade. I feel like I owe it to him to carry on his last name when I hopefully have kids.”
Despite the Grimwade name he’d made for himself in the football world, George knew changing his last name to match his mom and the person he’s called dad for so many years was something he needed to do.
So at the college’s Family Weekend game this past October, with his mom and Michael watching from the sidelines, George made public the love he has always held for this father figure. He jogged over to his dad, told him how much he loved him, and said, “Look at my jersey.” He turned around, showed him the new five letter last name that adorned his jersey and handed Michael the official court papers. As imaginable, his dad was overcome with emotion. Tearfully he said, “You’re my son.”
“I saw my name on that jersey,” said Michael. “It was like, wow, this kid really loves me. I couldn’t get the words out of my mouth. It took my voice away. He’s just the best.”
George’s mom, Michelle, said she feels incredibly fortunate to have a family that is so close. “Michael deserves this honor and I’m so proud that our son recognizes what’s truly important. It’s a thoughtful, loving and selfless act of respect. I’m a very happy mom and wife.”
Michelle was also thankful the whole family was able to spend the Thanksgiving holiday together at Ocean Reef, and they’re looking forward to George’s upcoming graduation.
In his video, originally posted by Samford University, the now George Grimwade Musto said to his father, “I love you so much and you really do mean the world to me. Without you, I don’t know who I am, nor would I know where I’m at. I’m really happy I get to carry on that last name for you and I hope I treat it well. Thank you.”
Have the tissues ready and watch the heartwarming video in full (just Google “George Grimwade Musto”) – you’ll be glad you did.