In March 2018, Darleen Justance was celebrating her birthday at Woodland, a Brooklyn "brunch party" spot, complete with bottomless mimosas and a DJ. She danced the day away as her friends recorded the celebration.
But when those videos popped up in her friends' Snapchat memories in March 2022, the videos made her friend do a double take. Because the person who had waited their table was someone she recognized, someone a lot of people would recognize.
"She was like, 'Oh my god, that's Fez,'" Justance told TODAY.com.
Then, on July 31, 2023, Cloud's family announced he died at the age of 25.
“It is with the heaviest heart that we had to say goodbye to an incredible human today,” the family said in a statement.
Justance researched Cloud's background in acting and discovered that "Euphoria" was his big break. In a 2019 interview with GQ after the airing of the first season, Cloud said that before playing Fez, he was working in a “chicken and waffle joint” and living in Bushwick.
Justance posted the chance interaction on TikTok on March 3, 2022.
“I have a couple friends who are very excited about the show, so I just threw it up there, you know, I always show like little funny things,” she said. “And I thought it was a great story.”
“Wow, 4 years ago Fez was my waiter at my birthday brunch in Brooklyn,” the video text states.
But what Justance didn't expect was must how much that video would take off. In just one day, it hit 20 million views and more than 3.8 million likes. COMPLEX also shared the video to Instagram, commenting "so much can change in 4 years 💫."
In the clip, which she set to the signature "Euphoria" song "Forever" by Labrinth, Justance is dancing with friends when Cloud scoots by to bus the table.
"This is amazing @Angus Cloud fast forward now you're a star on Euphoria," she wrote in the caption.
The now-closed restaurant was packed at the time, Justance said, with multiple birthday celebrations going on. She said she remembers Cloud being very focused.
People quickly reacted in the TikTok comments, with many expressing jealousy at Justance's sheer proximity to Cloud, even if she didn't realize the significance at the time.
"imagine being served by angus," the most liked comment reads.
Another person wrote, "Wow thats dope. Never underestimate God's timing."
Cloud, who attended the Oakland School for the Arts and studied technical theater, famously got his role in "Euphoria" by simply walking down the street. One chance day, he was stopped by a casting representative.
“I was confused and I didn’t want to give her my phone number,” he told GQ. “I thought it was a scam.”
Later, he found himself reading lines from the series' pilot in front of a director. When the show was picked up for its first season, he moved to Los Angeles and spent his days in front of the camera. Compared to his old job in a restaurant, acting proved a "different kind of hard," he said.
"I am not running around sweating, but it’s that mental shit. You have to stay focused. You have to be on point. You can’t call in sick. Acting takes a lot out of you. I’d be drained, but I was just sitting there acting," Cloud said.
Justance sees her video of Cloud pre-"Euphoria" fame as a testament to just how much things can change in a matter of years.
"I love the story of him like getting scouted in New York," she said. "And really just, you know, being successful."