In 1985, a lot of movie-going youngsters dreamed of traveling back in time, finding a bicycle in the basement of the Alamo, or using a mysterious map to discover pirate treasure.
In Kansas City, one kid left the theater with a feeling he’d someday own a house in “the Goondocks.” Then, in December 2022, that now-grown-up Goonies super-fan paid $1.7 million for the cinematic Walsh house. Why? He says The Goonies movie shaped his entire life.
One young man’s lifelong obsession with ‘Goonies’
Some films never get old, no matter how many times you see them. Others are about as interesting as unseasoned popcorn. Once in a while, a movie comes along that leaves an impression that lasts a lifetime. Such is the case with deeply devoted Goonies fan, Behman Zakeri.
In the summer of 1985, when Zakeri fell under the Goonies spell, the only place to see a first-run flick was in a brick-and-mortar theater. Zakeri and childhood friend, Michael Eakin, shared the theater experience many times. They established a lifelong commitment to stick together in a manner similar to Goonies kids Mikey, Mouth, Brandon, Data, Stef, and Chunk.
In a conversation with Kelly Clarkson, Zakeri spoke of his lifelong obsession that started as he watched the Goonies gang explore the tunnels and caves beneath Astoria, Oregon. Inspired by the lost treasure of a pirate named One-Eyed Willie, Zakeri and his childhood friends sought permission from neighborhood adults to explore their basements to look for valuable baseball cards and secret entrances to mystery caves.
Zakeri’s grown-up life continues to relate to The Goonies. As he told Clarkson, a Lou Gehrig baseball card featured in the movie connects to one of his current gigs as a buyer and seller of sports memorabilia. The piles of glimmering gold coins in One-Eyed Willie’s treasure correlate to his ownership of a We Buy Gold franchise. According to his professional LinkedIn profile, Zakeri is also a managing partner at Mastermind Escape Games in Overland Park, Kansas
After purchasing the Astoria home, Zakeri told local news station KCTV that he still relates to the Goonies positive message of hope and enduring friendship. He added that when you really love a movie, “it gets embedded in your DNA.”
The first ‘Goonies’ fan who owned the house was not so enamored
When someone buys a house that comes with a cinematic reputation, they should expect occasional visits by curious fans. Such was the case in 2001, when Sandi Preston purchased the Goonies house at 368 38th St. in the seaside town of Astoria.
Preston had fond memories of watching the movie with her kids. But she never expected to see upwards of 1,000 daily visitors to her yard. After a series of signs failed to stop the influx of lookers, Preston put the Goonies house up for sale.
Super-fan plans for the property
According to The Oregonian, the Goonies house was on the market for a mere six days before Zakeri purchased the property. He promised Preston he’d protect and preserve the house that means so much to so many fans. Interestingly, Zakeri’s childhood pal, “Mikey” Eakin also purchased a home on the same block as the Goonies house.
“My friendships from childhood have played a crucial role in shaping who I am and helping me achieve my goals. Purchasing this home is a testament to the power of friendship and the belief that our dreams can become a reality when you have a great support system by your side.”