The 13-year-old North Carolina native who took a now famous Super Bowl selfie with Justin Timberlake got yet another surprise from the singer on Friday.
Ryan McKenna, who was born in Greenville and now lives in Boston, was appearing on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” at the time, reliving his 15 minutes of fame.
However, DeGeneres had a bigger plan.
She joked that McKenna had become a big part of Timberlake’s life, then casually mentioned someone was waiting on the phone to talk to him.
When Timberlake’s voice came over the monitors, McKenna began to tear up.
“I tell you what I want to do,” Timberlake said, “because it was so unexpected that you came down and because all of this has happened, I thought to myself: I really wanna meet you properly."
DeGeneres then handed McKenna free tickets to a Timberlake concert stop in Boston later this year. There were tickets enough for his entire family.
“Oh my God, thank you so much,” Ryan replied, still crying.
The NFL added to the surprise, with four VIP tickets to a Patriots home game next season and four pregame field passes.
“Ryan, I look forward to meeting you and our second selfie together,” Timberlake said before signing off.
The selfie moment became the most famous part of Timberlake’s halftime show, because of its spontaneity. “The hands-down winner of Super Bowl halftime was the teen the internet immediately dubbed ‘selfie kid,’ who somehow managed to steal some of the spotlight away from Justin Timberlake,” wrote The Guardian.
McKenna posted his selfie to Instagram Sunday evening. By noon Monday, the photo had over 45,000 likes and McKenna had more than 50,000 followers on Instagram.
The teen attended Arendell Parrott Academy in Kinston when the family still lived in North Carolina, according to WNCT 9. The family also lived in New Bern for nine years before moving back to Boston.