LaPlace granny wins $20K on America’s Funniest Videos

Published 9:37 am Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

LAPLACE — A Christmas prank caught on video turned into $20,000 for LaPlace grandmother Carol Keating after her family submitted the clip to America’s Funniest Videos.

Keating’s spunky Cajun accent made a lasting impression, and she is now a top three finalist of the season in the running to win the $100,000 grand prize. She will be featured on the AFV episode airing at 6 p.m. on Sunday, May 14 on ABC. America’s Funniest Videos can also be streamed on Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney Plus and Twitch.

Keating often had tricks up her sleeve at Christmastime, whether it involved regifting a pair of her shoes or sneaking a thong into a purse. This time, the family jokester was on the opposite end of the prank when her daughters and granddaughters sneaked items from her house into the Christmas gift exchange.

It all started when Keating’s granddaughter Kelsie Williams saw a TikTok trend where kids took items from their parents’ house to regift. Keating’s family knew it would be the perfect prank, and they quickly set a plan into motion.

The Friday before Christmas, Chantelle Mury and her children went to drop off Christmas cookies at Keating’s house. Before they left, they each excused themselves to go to the restroom, and they took the opportunity to grab anything they could get their hands on.

“We were going all over the house,” Mury said. “When we got home, we took a picture of everything we had stolen. We got a little worried, thinking what if they realize something is missing and they call the police?”

Keating noticed one thing missing from her house — a purple Krewe of Allovus handkerchief from when her granddaughter Paige had served as queen. When she brought it up to her daughter Christmas morning, Mury brushed it off, joking, “You know, they say all that Diet Coke you drink gives you dementia. I’m sure you’ll find it.”

One of the first presents opened during the gift exchange was a 60-year-old flashlight, to which Keating exclaimed, “Papa’s got one just like that!”

She didn’t recognize the pair of nickel earrings and bracelet that came out of her jewelry box. “You go, girl,” she told her granddaughter after seeing the jewelry.

Then came a brand new Michael Kors wallet that still had the tag on it, one she distinctly remembered buying.

“I’ve got one just like that at my house!” she exclaimed, but she wasn’t certain the items were hers until the purple Allovus handkerchief was pulled from one of the bags. The entire family laughed together, hard enough to send Keating running for the bathroom.

Keating was caught by surprise once again when she learned her family had submitted her reaction to America’s Funniest Videos.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been lost for words, but at that time I was,” Keating said. “I was shaking inside. Who would’ve ever thought a Christmas game was going to turn into this? I did learn one thing out the whole ordeal. Don’t go to my daughter’s house and not have my hair fixed or makeup on.”

The AFV experience included Keating’s first time flying on an airplane as she ventured to California for filming.

“When we took off, there was a lot of turbulence,” Keating recalled. “I had my granddaughter in one ear saying, ‘Don’t holler’, and my daughter in the other ear saying, ‘Smell the flowers, blow out the candles’. That’s what kept me going until the plane got high enough, and then it was like you were just floating. It was wonderful.”

Although the weather was cold and rainy, and Keating wasn’t able to find her beloved Coca-Cola anywhere, she still had an amazing time filming, visiting the Santa Monica Pier, and meeting Carlton from The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.

“It was a very good experience. I never realized what all goes into putting a show on like that. We were nonstop from 9 in the morning to close to 8:30 at night,” Keating said. “If someone tells you to submit something, don’t ever say ‘Oh no, I’m not doing it.’ Either they are going to throw it out or contact you and say you’re on the next season. It’s well worth it.”

While Mury never expected the AFV submission to go so far, she’s used to her mother’s bright personality bringing joy to others. According to Mury, being able to experience those “firsts” with her mother during their trip to California was worth much more than the $20K.

“She’s America’s funniest Granny. She’s everyone’s Granny,” Mury said. “It wasn’t just for that video. That’s her personality; she’s funny like that all the time. I think the Cajun accent and her attitude towards life and her funny disposition is what makes it so great.”

If Keating is lucky enough to win the $100,000 grand prize, she plans to invest the money right back into her family. She only asks for one thing in return.

“I told them, when I pass, every year I want y’all to play that video and just enjoy Christmas,” Keating said.