Denzel Washington surprises grandmother on Chicago's South Side

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Tuesday, October 3, 2017
Denzel Washington surprises Chicago grandma
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Cellphone video captured a surprise visit by actor Denzel Washington on the South Side on Sept. 30, 2017.

CHICAGO -- Actor Denzel Washington surprised an 86-year-old grandmother this weekend at her doorstep on Chicago's South Side.

The visit to Juanita Hubbard was captured on a cellphone video which went viral on Facebook.

Washington was driving in the area trying to find Leon's BBQ, according to the Hubbard family, when he saw the family outside and decided to start chatting. That's when he learned Hubbard was a fan and surprised her at the doorstep.

Hubbard was at home for a schedule repair when Washington surprised her. She said she hasn't been able to sleep since the encounter.

In the video, Hubbard is seen holding Washington's arm as he tells stories about being "5, 6, 7" years old at 86th and Harper, as he used to have family in the same neighborhood and would visit as a child.

She is seen clutching Washington's arm and saying, "I'm not going to let him go!" in the video. At another point, Washington shakes a young boy's hand and says, "My name is Denzel."

Hubbard said she could not believe how genuine he was, chatting it up with everyone from the neighborhood and even reciting one of his famous lines from "Training Day."

Hubbard has lived at East 86th and South East End Avenue since the 1950s, but recently moved in with her granddaughter in south suburban Calumet City while repairs were being done to her home.