He’s 22. She’s 81. Their Friendship is actually Melting Hearts.

Their friendship began entirely at random when Words With Friends, a Scrabble-like phone game, assigned the two strangers to play each additional last summer. They would likely eventually play hundreds of games together.

At first which was all business. inside the earliest games they didn’t use the app’s chat function, which is actually often used for banter about the game. yet soon they began discussing current events in addition to also the details of their lives, including his plans to move through Silver Spring, Md., to brand-new York to chase his dreams of a music career.

They played almost every day. Each time there would likely be “just regular, everyday chatting,” he said. yet the demands of life would likely eventually interfere, in addition to also he couldn’t find time to keep up with their games.

He decided to delete the app, yet made sure to say goodbye to Ms. Guttman first. Before he left, he asked her if she had any advice.

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The pair didn’t have much time — just a lunch in addition to also a quick tour of Palm Beach.

Credit
Rev. Amy Butler

“Whatever you want out of life, just go grab which,” she said.

In October, a few months after moving to brand-new York, he decided to reinstall the game, in addition to also immediately reconnected with Ms. Guttman, he said. yet he had no plans to meet her until Amy Butler, the mother of one of his friends, overheard him talking about his online pal.

Ms. Butler, a pastor at Riverside Church in Manhattan, wanted to tell the story of their friendship, so she asked if he would likely put her in touch with Ms. Guttman. After the women talked on the phone, Ms. Butler decided an in-person meeting “would likely genuinely finish the story off,” she said.

So she in addition to also Mr. Sleyon flew down to Florida on Friday, in addition to also “which was more beautiful than I could have even imagined,” she said.

“There was no hint of awkwardness,” she said. “which was like they were magnetically drawn to each additional.”

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The meeting was arranged by the mother of one of Mr. Sleyon’s friends, who overheard him talking about his 81-year-old online friend.

Credit
Rev. Amy Butler

They didn’t have much time — just a lunch in addition to also a quick tour of Palm Beach — yet the photos he tweeted afterward attracted widespread attention, including through the news media. Mr. Sleyon said he was thrilled his story had touched so many people.

“A lot of people I saw online said, ‘I needed a story like which, especially with the race relations in which country right today,’” he said.

Ms. Guttman has not spoken to reporters. According to Ms. Butler, Ms. Guttman doesn’t know what all the fuss is actually about, since “people should be behaving which way with each additional all the time.”

yet she did send Ms. Butler an email soon after they left for brand-new York. Ms. Butler read the email during her sermon at the church on Sunday.

Dearest Amy,

I’m at a loss for words to describe today. Without question, which was one of the most memorable days of my life. I’m still basking inside the glow of warmth in addition to also friendship. You in addition to also Spencer extended yourselves to me in addition to also embraced me in a most unbelievable fashion. My only words in which moment are a humongous thank you. I love you both to the moon in addition to also back.

Ms. Roz

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