Local man surprised by Coca-Cola for his birthday

James Kean received the surprise of a lifetime
Published: Mar. 22, 2023 at 5:51 PM CDT
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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - One local man’s dream came true when he got an extra special birthday surprise. It was a special delivery from the makers of his favorite beverage.

Twenty-two-year-old James Kean says that his biggest dream is to be a Coca-Cola man, and he got to live that out on his birthday.

If you ask James what he wants to be when he grows up, it will be the same answer every time.

“The Coca Cola Man!” says James.

James does not let anything hinder his smile, which is big enough to light up any room.

His mother, Christine Carter, says Coca-Cola has always been a huge part of his life.

“From the moment he put a Coca-Cola to his lips he said ‘ahh’, he loved it. It was love at first sip, right James?”

“We’ve used it for reinforcement to help James with his disabilities and such- it’s always brought many smiles and so much joy,” said Carter.

When James’s birthday rolled around, his family reached out to see if a Coca-Cola truck could drive by their house.

“I went and told my partner in life, Larry Stanley, he put that on ‘What’s Happening in Fairhope” and wam-boom-bam, a wonderful woman named Kyna Phillips contacted her husband who works for the Coca Cola company in Robertsdale and here we are.”

Robertsdale Coca-Cola came to the rescue, surprising James with that- and much more.

“We got to meet the Coca-Cola man and see his delivery truck. It was awesome. James had a wonderful time and was all smiles,” she said.

Of course, James sipped on a fresh Coca-Cola.

“It was refreshing,” he said.

Then, he opened a pile of Coca-Cola themed presents]

“I got a blanket and a towel and coozies and hats,” he added.

Rusty Ryan showed James the ropes of working for Coca-Cola as a route delivery driver. He says it was a special day for him, too.

“James made my day. I like helping people out like that to get something out to them to let them know who we are. This doesn’t seem much to people from the public- but when someone that is special needs and that’s their dream, I am all in for it,” he said.

“We’re so super excited. And it’s just goes to show there are really good people in the world. We’re thrilled. This is so good for him,” said Carter.

Carter wants to thank Tim Westerman and Kyna and Chad Phillips for making it a memorable day not only for James but for her whole family too.