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The week's good news: March 29, 2018

Catherine Garcia
LightField Studios / Alamy Stock Photo
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1.

Bride-to-be accidentally sends invitation to the wrong address, gets back a heartfelt response

Cassandra Warren didn't realize she had put the wrong address on the wedding invitation she sent to her aunt and uncle in Eugene, Oregon, until she received a sweet note and gift from a total stranger. The person who accidentally received the invite sent Warren and her fiancé, Jesse Jones, a $20 bill along with her well wishes, writing: "I wish I knew you — this is going to be a blast. Congratulations — go have dinner on me. I've been married for 40 years — it gets better with age." Warren and Jones, who will wed in June, used the $20 to take their friend in the military, about to go overseas, out to dinner. Warren also wrote a quick letter back to the kind stranger, telling her, "I am thankful for people like you still being in the world." [The Washington Post]

2.

Friends for 80 years, these childhood besties still meet for lunch once a month

They met in grade school and just never grew apart, sticking together for all of life's major events: Graduations, weddings, births, and deaths. The six women — Joyce Sindel, 85; Arlene Dunaetz, 85; Armony Share, 86; Charlotte Gussin-Root, 85; Jackie Waterman, 86; and Helen Bialeck, 85 — bonded while attending Sheridan Street Elementary in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Boyle Heights. Once a month, they gather for lunch to reminisce about the past and chat about what they're up to now, but they also have other adventures — Sindel decided late in life to become an actress, and after answering an ad for an older woman with a lot of friends, booked them all to appear in a Facebook commercial that aired during the Golden Globes. "We know each other," she told the Los Angeles Times. "We know our histories. With these girls, there's never any pretense." [Los Angeles Times]

3.

Dog saves South Carolina man who fell into a river

Woody was at the right place at the right time last week when he rescued Mason Ringer from the cold and choppy Okatie River in South Carolina. A 7-year-old yellow Labrador retriever, Woody was on the banks of the river when he saw Ringer's boat capsize. Ringer was with two coworkers, taking a lunch break while refurbishing a dock, when the boat tipped over. One man was able to swim and make it to safety, and another was pulled from the water by three people on a passing boat, leaving Woody to take care of Ringer: He jumped into the water and pulled him to a nearby dock. It was a "miracle" that Woody was able to rescue him, Ringer said, and he plans on treating the dog to a nice steak. [The Associated Press]

4.

California middle school students turn their project on homelessness into action

A group of middle school students in Southern California is trying to change how people view the homeless, turning apathy into compassion. The students, seventh and eighth graders from Summit Intermediate School in Rancho Cucamonga, are part of an Odyssey of the Mind team. Odyssey of the Mind teaches kids how to solve problems and work together, and the group chose to focus on homelessness. "I think that more people should look toward the homeless community as people rather than things that are just on the streets, and they shouldn't be a source of fear," Alana Okonkwo, 13, told the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin. The students made posters with statistics about homeless youth, created the hashtag #homelessnotless, and for two weeks held a toiletries drive. They then put together care kits, which included backpacks filled with supplies, sleeping bags, and inspirational messages on cards, and distributed them to local homeless individuals and shelters. [Inland Valley Daily Bulletin]

5.

Brain tumor survivor breaks Atlantic Ocean rowing record

Eight months ago, Kiko Matthews was in the hospital recovering from brain surgery. Now the 36-year-old Briton has become the fastest woman to row solo across the Atlantic Ocean. Matthews nearly died from a tumor caused by Cushing's disease in 2009 and survived a second tumor on her brain last year. Wanting to give back to the London hospital that saved her life, the former teacher set off on a 3,000-nautical-mile fundraising trek from Gran Canaria to Barbados. Matthews completed the voyage in a record 50 days and raised more than $120,000. "Anyone can attempt anything given the right attitude, belief, and support," says Matthews. [ESPN]