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Man uncovers how his grandfather's photo ended up on 'The Outsiders' book cover

He posted one of his grandfather's most iconic photos on Reddit with information about his identity and was shocked to find out about its popularity.

Man uncovers how his grandfather's photo ended up on 'The Outsiders' book cover
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | Rodolfo Clix; PEOPLE

It's hard for young folks to picture their elders as anything but the responsible caretakers they know today. Yet, those same guardians were once young and possibly quite the adventurers. Reddit user jimmydadean got the surprise of his life when he shared a vintage 1949 photo of his grandfather, Willie Grandon, unveiling a hidden chapter of his past. The photo of the young and rebellious Grandon was taken after he was arrested in Kansas for partaking in multiple robberies, per People. At the time, he was just 16 years old, while his friend Oscar Walls was 17.

The Outsiders book cover / Penguin
Image Source: The Outsiders (book cover) | Penguin

The Reddit user found the photo quite interesting and decided to share more details about his grandfather, including proof of his identity and what happened to him after he got arrested on Imgur. He shared that his grandfather had a bit of a 'scoundrel' phase in his youth, a chapter shaped by a challenging home life he rarely spoke of later on. Soon after, he ran away, joining a circus and then a gang of youths, after which he got arrested. "He never really talked about this part of his life and he certainly wasn't proud of it," the man shared.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | KATRIN BOLOVTSOVA
Representative Image Source: Pexels | KATRIN BOLOVTSOVA

Life took a positive turn when a judge, seeing potential in him, sentenced him to community service as a baker's apprentice instead of jail time. It proved to be quite helpful for him as his life would have gone differently had he gone to jail. Grandon eventually went on to work for Boeing, joined the army, continued baking and had a family. The picture taken during his arrest would become permanently entrenched in history, being used in S.E. Hinton's classic book, "The Outsiders."

This information was new to the Reddit user, who had little to no idea about his grandfather's eventful past. He learned all about this once he submitted the Corbis picture to the subreddit r/OldSchoolCool, which frequently posts vintage photos of people from the past. This story is a testament to how we never really know where our photos might end up. This Reddit user now knows all of the difficulties his grandfather faced when he grew up and will most likely have a newfound respect for him for being able to turn his life around.

Old photos can bring fresh perspectives to people looking at them in the present day. Lakyn Bowman was going through some old photos and found that she looked very much like her grandmother. So, she posted a video, sharing how she had chosen to celebrate her grandmother's 71st birthday by recreating each of her unique looks in the photos. After using a curling iron, applying light blue eyeshadow, and wearing cute floral prints along with retro-themed photo filters, the similarity is striking. Viewers on the platform were thrilled to see such a unique tribute, and the video has garnered over 8.8 million views.

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