Feature

Teen gang member mends his ways, and more

Brayan ran away from home at the age of 12 and for three years embraced a life of street crime and drug use.

Teen gang member mends his waysA teenager who joined a gang in elementary school has mended his ways, achieving a 4.0 GPA at a new high school. Brayan—who doesn’t want his last name revealed—ran away from home at the age of 12 and for three years embraced a life of street crime and drug use. Even after leaving the gang and returning home, he was expelled for selling drugs in school. But with a new high school came a fresh start, as a teacher inspired Brayan to write about his experiences rather than repeat them. The 17-year-old is bound for college in the fall.

Champion nonagenariansTwo nonagenarians defied creaking joints and reluctant muscles to compete in a thrilling 60-meter dash last week. Belgian runner Emiel Pauwels, 94, took on Finnish rival Ilmari Koppinen, 95, in the European Veterans Athletics Championships in San Sebastian, Spain. Although Koppinen got off to a flying start, the younger athlete passed him just seconds from the finish line. However, both runners were awarded gold medals—Pauwels for finishing first in the over-90s category, and Koppinen for 95 and over. Koppinen also won gold medals in the shot put, long jump, and triple jump categories. 

A literary marriage proposalTalk about a fairy-tale romance. A Chicagoan popped the question to his girlfriend by writing a children’s book about their relationship with a proposal on the final page. Jason Methner asked an animator friend to help him illustrate the book and hid it in the Chicago Public Library. He then convinced girlfriend Molly Lipsitz that they needed to track down a book written by a friend. Lipsitz quickly realized the book was about them, and said yes upon reaching the ending. Methner now hopes they will live happily ever after. “I would love for our children to read it someday,” he said.

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