An 8-year-old Oklahoma boy surprised his mom, his teachers and his elementary school principal when he told them he put a dead squirrel in his backpack because he wanted to eat it for dinner.
Mom Ladye Hobson on Wednesday shared the story of her son Brylan, identified by KOKH as an Oklahoma City elementary school student, on Facebook. Within 48 hours, the post had more than 120,000 shares and nearly 190,000 reactions.
In a blog post, Hobson described her nervousness when she picked up her cellphone and saw that her son's principal was calling.
"I just called to let you know that Brylan has made my day," the principal said, according to Hobson. The laughter in her voice put Hobson at ease, although her relief was short-lived.
"The principal proceeds to tell me, obviously holding back laughter, that the faculty has discovered a dead squirrel in my son's backpack," she said. "Please pause here to imagine my horror. To say I am embarrassed is an understatement. … A dead squirrel? Why is it in his backpack? How did the squirrel die? And why in the world would he try to keep this dead animal in his backpack?"
Many of Hobson's questions will never be answered, but her son was able to fill in one of the key blanks.
"When asked by the principal what possessed him to pick up this dead squirrel and store it in his backpack, my son replies with 'I really wanted squirrel dumplings for dinner tonight,'" Hobson said. "Y'all, I had to explain that we are from the country, but we're not that country."
She told KOKH that Brylan's father sometimes joked about making squirrel dumplings for dinner.
"Unfortunately, Mr. Squirrel's final resting place was the dumpster outside the elementary school," Hobson wrote on Facebook. "I'm hopeful, though, that he would be proud of how we've honored him through sharing this story."