CLEVELAND (WJW) – There’s nothing quite like a spontaneous surprise from your significant other, but for Erin Palek, she never expected the “breakfast for two” that her boyfriend Zach set up, paying tribute to her close friend who tragically died two years ago.
Video of the surprise, which was posted to TikTok, has since gone viral with millions of views.
Erin says she became friends with Taylor Strauss in middle school, later graduating together in 2013.
“Taylor was the most spontaneous friend ever. She had the best laugh, almost like a loud cackling,” Erin said. “She lived a sense of wanderlust and had the mentality of, ‘life is too short, book the trip.'”
Erin said Taylor saw more of the world than most people ever will, but she also loved spending time here in Cleveland.
She tragically died in a car accident on May 14, 2021, leaving behind loving family and friends.
“She is missed dearly every single day, and we try to keep her spirit alive by continuing to do all the things that she loved,” Erin said.
Erin’s boyfriend, Zach Fehrenbach, never had the chance to meet Taylor, but that didn’t stop him from honoring her memory with a special breakfast.
On May 11, Taylor’s birthday, Erin was out on a walk and Zach surprised her with flowers, saying he had another surprise for her when she got home.
When she made it back, Erin found Post-It notes leading her to the patio, with the last one reading, “breakfast for two.”
“I was confused why there was only one chair outside,” Erin said. “I asked if he was going to come outside and eat with me and he said, ‘No, but I’ll come out there in a little bit. It’s just for you.'”
Still puzzled, Erin made her way outside to find Taylor’s hat sitting across the table.
“The ‘breakfast for two’ was for me and Taylor,” she said. “I sat with her hat for a while, cried, ate my breakfast and we talked for a while. I told her I wish every day that she could have met Zach before she passed.”
She said they would’ve gotten along well, but at the same time, she feels like Taylor already does know him, in a way.
“She keeps showing me signs that she is still around and approves of him,” Erin said.
A video of the breakfast was posted to TikTok and has over 3 million views. Erin said she hopes their story can inspire others to do the same for a friend or partner who has lost a loved one.
“I’ve never heard of anyone doing this before,” she said. “It was such a simple gesture, but it was so thoughtful and really meant the world to me.”