Friday, October 30, 2015

So you definitely know who this man is. Zach Galifianakis is the adorably dumb, awkward, screw-up in so many of your favorite movies, from The Hangover series to his charming Emmy Award-winning talk show Between Two Ferns. No one can get enough of the cuddly, brawny comedian. But it seems like his good-natured temperament isn’t just an act. This story will go straight to your heart.

This is Mimi Haist, an 87-year-old woman from LA who volunteers at a laundromat. She survived on tips given to her by customers. When Mimi was forced onto the streets in her 50’s, she found her “home” between two rows of washers at the Santa Monica laundromat. About 20 years ago Galifianakis enters her story.

Zach was a no-name struggling comedian in 1994 when he first met Mimi. She was living in the laundromat, helping young, struggling actors do their laundry. Galifianakis was so amazed and taken aback by the woman’s spirit and her vitality - despite being homeless - that the two struck up a friendship that would turn into something she could never have imagined.

After stardom finally came for Galifianakis, thanks the incredibly successful The Hangover in 2009, the actor stopped frequenting the laundromat. “Maybe he has his own washer and dryer now,” thought Haist. Despite all this, Galifianakis never forgot about Mimi.

The two lost touch until 4 years ago in 2011, when he found out that Mimi had now been evicted also from the laundromat. That is when Zach made a brave and selfless decision. Mimi would get a true home.

Zach bought her an apartment and recruited the help of Renee Zellweger to furnish it. Zach also pays for her utilities. But that’s not all. He has made sure that Mimi feels like the star she is. Zach has taken her to several movie premieres, most recently The Hangover Part 2.

“I dress up nice and a friend helps me with my makeup. It’s fun, not something I’ve ever dreamed I’d experience. The limo takes me home afterwards.”

The story of Mimi and Zach Galifianakis reminds us to never give up. Sometimes, in the gutter, you will find the most uplifting people. The kind of people who, even when down on their luck, still just keep looking up at the stars.

Wow, I was really touched by this selfless act of such a great Samaritan. If you found this story of a superstar comedian with a heart of gold just as impressive as I did, then share it with everyone you know. Zach is a true hero.



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