The Massachusetts teenager who took a viral selfie with Justin Timberlake during the Super Bowl halftime show is from North Carolina.
Thirteen-year-old Ryan McKenna was born in Greenville and now lives in Boston. McKenna said on ABC's "Good Morning America" on Monday that his phone "exploded" with messages and phone calls and he now has thousands of new social media followers.
Ryan attended Arendell Parrott Academy in Kinston when the family still lived in North Carolina, according to WNCT 9.
McKenna and his family also lived in New Bern for nine years before moving back to Boston, where their family is originally from.
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Ryan says he was unprepared for his brush with fame. Timberlake, he said, “just came up and I just like jumped right in there with him.”
Viewers saw McKenna looking at his phone for a moment when Timberlake ran up the stairs into the crowd.
“I had a video going, and then my phone got shut off, and I had to pull back up the phone to get the picture going,” McKenna told Good Morning America. “And then I finally got the selfie in the end.”
Social media users on the Internet did not fail to speculate why he looked down at his phone while the pop star was standing a few inches away.
McKenna posted his selfie to Instagram Sunday evening. By noon on Monday, the photo had over 45,000 likes and McKenna had more than 50,000 followers on Instagram.