By now you’re probably familiar with the story of the four University of Idaho college students who were found murdered in their home last fall. The story dominated headlines, and a suspect was finally arrested in December and charged with the gruesome crimes.
One of those students was Ethan Chapin, a 20-year old native of Washington who was killed alongside his girlfriend, Xana Kernodle. Two of her roommates, Kaylee Goncalves and Madison Mogen, were also killed in the attacks.
Well apparently Chapin and his mother shared a special bond over one song in particular: “Thought You Should Know” by Morgan Wallen.
The song, which was released in May 2022 and included on Morgan’s 2023 album One Thing At a Time, was co-written by Morgan along with Miranda Lambert and Nicolle Galyon as a tribute to his mother, Lesli.
And according to Chapin’s mother Stacy, Ethan sent her the song on Mother’s Day of last year, telling her that the song Morgan had written for his own mother could be their song too:
“On Mother’s Day 2022, Ethan sent me the best text about how Morgan Wallen had written a song for his mom Lesli Wallen and how that could be our song. It was a very touching moment between us. I listen to “I Thought You Should Know” all the time.”
Well word of the mother’s bond with her late son over his song made its way to Morgan Wallen himself. So Morgan invited Stacy, her husband Jim, Ethan’s surviving triplet siblings, and their friends to his sold out show at Petco Park in San Diego this weekend for his One Night at a Time tour.
Morgan met with the family before the show, and his mom Lesli even flew out to the show to meet with the grieving mother:
“Last night, we met Morgan Wallen! He kindly gifted our family and friends tickets to his show in San Diego. Morgan’s mom, Lesli, even flew in! It was an incredibly bittersweet full-circle moment.”
But that wasn’t all. Morgan also provided the family with a donation to the Ethan’s Smile Foundation, which was set up in honor of Ethan to provide local students with scholarships to the University of Idaho:
“Truthfully, the show would have been enough. We were all over the moon, and then Morgan handed us a donation check to the Ethan’s Smile Foundation. It was one of the kindest gestures in my life. I still cannot believe it happened, and it isn’t easy to recognize it all came at a massive cost to our family.