Credit: The Union Journal

John Capron, 23 year-old Boston college student is a self-taught pianist. He never owned a piano of his own, but that didn’t stop him from finding ways to practice his craft and fine-tune his skills.

He didn’t go into the ReMARKable Cleanouts antique store in Norwood, Massachusetts with his girlfriend with the intention of finding a piano. Going to the antique store was just supposed to be a way to get out of the house. However, once Capron saw an old Whitney piano for sale, he asked a sales associate, Melissa Rediker, for permission to play. She agreed, and she was surprised to hear a rendition of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin'” fill the store.

Credit: CBS Boston

“Usually, the kids are jumping on it playing ‘Chopsticks,’ which drives everybody nuts, so it was good to hear him,” store owner Mark Waters says. “As he was playing, people just started surrounding him.”

Rediker took a video of Capron’s performance to share on the antique store’s Facebook page. She hoped the feel-good performance would warm customer hearts and inspire them to stop by, but the video did so much more than that. As the story made national news, store owner Mark Waters knew he had to find this man.

To abide to COVID-19 restrictions, John Capron wore a mask during his performance. It took some hunting, but Capron’s identity was finally discovered, and Mark Waters offered him the Whitney Piano for free.

“I was thinking, ‘I cannot turn that down. I definitely cannot turn that down. This would be the first piano I ever owned,'” Capron said.

Mark Waters was inspired by the joy Capron brought to his store. Hoping to inspire some of that joy himself, when Capron arrived, he wasn’t offered the Whitney Piano he played in the video. Waters presented him a Steinway and Sons piano that had been sitting in the back of the store valued at over $3,000.

Credit: NBC Boston

Capron was so shocked by the kindness that he burst into tears, moving everyone in the store.

“To see him cry made me cry,” Waters said WCVB. “It’s just going to sit here, so if you can bring it into somebody else’s life and bring it back to life, then God bless America, you know what I mean? That’s what life’s about! I wish I could do this every day!”

Capron’s gift for music brightened the days of hundreds of thousands of people across the world. To have the joy returned is a perfect end to the story.