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'Pay It Forward': Photo of 'Umbrella Dad' Goes Viral

A photo taken on a rainy day has gone viral for all the right reasons.
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A photo taken on a rainy day has gone viral for all the right reasons.

Posted over the weekend on Reddit, the image shows a grown man and young child walking in the rain. The man, assumed to be the father, is soaked wet from the rain while he holds an umbrella over the young boy, assumed to be his son.

The photo was first uploaded to Reddit by 25-year-old Eumine Choi, who goes by the username "Mystarbucknameismike," on Friday night with the caption: "Hope the son just grows up to realize how lucky he is... Pay it forward."

Choi told NBC News he took the photo in Flushing, Queens, after leaving work, and had originally intended to only share the photo on Facebook. He said he didn't think it would grab so much attention.

"I walked outside my building, opened my umbrella and as I look[ed] up, there it was," Choi, who works in banking, said. "A dad that didn't care about his leather briefcase or his clothes, but his son...It reminded me of my dad and all the times he put me before him."

The photo was reposted by another user an hour later with the simple caption: "Dads." That post has been viewed more than 3 million times.

The photo has also been shared to the Facebook page for the Kon Wah Day School, the name of the school printed on the child's backpack. "I hope this photo finds its way to the family," the caption reads.

"I know where this is," a Reddit user commented. "And knowing that this photo was taken there makes me happy :). As the area is usually just ... a bit lacking in beautiful moments it seems."

But not all commenters were supportive of the man's actions, and criticized him for not picking the boy up. "Dad could easily have carried the little guy AND hold the umbrella," one user wrote.