Missing Daddy Doll goes viral, finds love from Facebook users nationwide

Phil Briggs
July 19, 2019 - 11:57 am


What started as a search for a 3-year-old’s missing “Daddy Doll” has become a viral story that proves social media occasionally brings us all together.

It all started while Jessica Osborne and her kids were visiting family in Lebanon, OH.

Like many military families, the Osborne kids find comfort in small camouflage dolls complete with a picture of their Daddy (Brandon) who is currently away training with the Kentucky National Guard. 

“I had gotten it out Friday morning just to kind of give them that pep talk, ‘Dad’s not going to be around for a while, but he’s coming back,’ kind of thing," Osborne told FOX 19.

But after a trip to LaRosa’s Pizza and Dairy Queen in Lebanon, OH, the doll went missing.

“We decided to walk to the Dairy Queen,” explained Osborne. “I remember taking Highland Ave, and another road that leads to the Dairy Queen on Columbus Ave., which is right next to our family's neighborhood.”

Whether her daughter’s doll fell out of their vehicle in a parking lot near LaRosa’s Pizza or was dropped along their walk for ice cream is unknown.

But what is known, is that the people of the Internet have responded in a big way. “I’ve been so amazed by people in the local area,” said Jessica Osborne. “They have gone out on foot, and searched through trash cans … I’ve never seen a community come together like that.  You often just see people attacking each other online.”

Her initial Facebook post has received over 300 comments and almost 7K shares.

“To be honest, I just posted it in a local group first, because if they happened to be in the area walking around, I was just hoping to get it returned. I really had no intention of this going viral,” Osborne said.

Jessica Osborne / Facebook

Many Facebook users are offering their "Daddy Dolls" to replace the missing one. Others express their sympathy and offer kind messages and memories of when their children were young.

Despite the hundreds of offers, Osborne said she has already replaced the missing doll with a new one for her daughter, “Although it has a slightly different camouflage pattern,” said Osborne.

But what the Osborne’s may remember most about the dilemma of the missing doll is the love they found from around the country. “I couldn’t believe how the media has covered it ... I've never heard of other missing Daddy Doll stories going viral.  Just to see so many people care, that’s the most heartwarming thing I’ve ever seen.”

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