The 'Homeless Man with a Golden Voice' Gets a Third Chance

One year ago, Ted Williams drank away a new lease on life. But not everyone's given up on him yet.

In January 2011, we first told you about Ted Williams, the so-called "homeless man with a golden voice" who'd fallen on hard times after promising career in radio collapsed under alcoholism. A happenstance run-in with an Ohio newspaper reporter resulted in swarm of media attention focused on Williams, which in turn turned his life around overnight. He was offered myriad voice-over jobs and lucrative sports announcing gigs, and it looked like he was about to be set for life. But then it all went to hell almost immediately.

Unaccustomed to all the attention, Williams, who had been fighting to remain sober for years, snapped under the pressure, spiraling once again into alcoholism and losing out on all the deals dangling in front of his eyes. At the time of his unraveling, I said I hoped he might be able to have a comeback to his comeback. "If there's such a thing as a second chance," I wrote, "there should be a third chance, too." As luck would have it, it turns out someone agreed with me.

A little less than a year after he imploded his budding new life, Williams has visited rehab twice and is now getting another opportunity to start anew. This Valentine's Day, listen for Williams' voice in a new Kraft mac and cheese campaign:

In a three-day Valentine's Day campaign for Macaroni & Cheese, Kraft will direct consumers to tweet love messages with the hashtag #VoiceOfLove. Mr. Williams will record personalized videos in response to some of the tweets, in which he will read back the original tweet using his golden pipes.


Kudos to Kraft for taking a risk. Williams is now living in a Brooklyn condo with his girlfriend and a sober living coach, proof that second—and third—chances do exist. Let's hope he doesn't need a fourth. But if he does, let's hope he gets that one, too.



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