Stranger Gives Child Piano Prodigy a Stunning Gift

Bill Magnusson hopes to see Jude Kofie reach his full potential: 'He's Mozart level'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2023 7:21 AM CST

Eleven-year-old Jude Kofie stunned his parents when he sat down at the family's electric keyboard about a year ago and started playing fabulously, despite having no instruction. The boy living with autism in Aurora, Colorado, seemed to have a gift, as professional piano tuner Bill Magnusson recognized when he saw Jude playing in a local TV report in September. KMGH noted Jude—who had heart surgery as an infant and required a feeding tube until the age of 8—is now the lead keyboardist at his church as well as "a one-man wedding band." But Magnusson thought he could be much more.

After learning Jude's parents had emigrated from Ghana and were raising four kids while supporting relatives in their home country, Magnusson decided to lend a helping hand. As CBS News reports, he used $15,000 of his father's inheritance to buy a grand piano, worth as much as $45,000, which suddenly appeared at Jude's house. "Woohoo!" an excited Jude shouts in video footage of the arrival. But the piano was only part of the surprise. Magnusson also agreed to tune the piano once a month for the rest of his life and pay for professional piano lessons for Jude.

"Who does that?" says Jude's father, Isaiah, per CBS. For "somebody to just love your son like that by making sure that his future is secured, we are super thankful." "We're family now," says Magnusson, noting he only wanted to "help this special little soul." "He's beyond special. He's Mozart level," he tells CBS. "And he deserves the very best," he tells KMGH. But "it's not just for him. It's for all the people he's going to touch," Magnusson adds, per People. "The ripple effects for the next 70 or 80 years are incalculable." Jude's new teacher notes the boy is "so hungry to learn more." Jude himself says he "never stops" playing. (More uplifting news stories.)

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