The week's good news: April 7, 2022
Friendship between young girl and grocer sparks a movement to recognize kindness
In the produce department of the Publix in Fort Myers, Florida, a friendship was formed. Rachel Smith told Good Morning America she was drawn to the location because "there was always such a culture of kindness," and no one embodied this more than Gilnet. A grocer at the store for several years, he was always happy to see Smith and her daughter Fiona, now 6. Gilnet taught her how to high five, which resulted in Fiona nicknaming him "High Five." She always ran into the store to look for her friend, and for her third birthday in 2019, Gilnet surprised Fiona with a new bike. "He's priceless to us," Smith said. Gilnet was transferred early in the pandemic, and last week, after two years, Smith tracked Gilnet down at his new store and brought Fiona to visit. The pals were thrilled to reunite, with Fiona running to Gilnet for a hug. Smith told GMA she's been inspired to start a charity called "Who's Your High Five," which aims to spark a movement where "people can submit stories about people who've positively impacted their lives the way [Gilnet's] positively impacted ours."
Idaho dad sets world record during half marathon to show his kids 'anything is possible'
When Chad Kempel crossed the finish line at his first ever half marathon, he wasn't alone — five of his children were right there with him, secure in a stroller that he pushed the entire way. Last month, Kempel finished the half marathon at California's Oakland Running Festival in 2 hours and 19 minutes. His 4-year-old quintuplets — Lincoln, Noelle, Grayson, Preston, and Gabriella — plus the stroller weighed 240 pounds, and he told Today Parents that at several points, he wasn't sure if he'd be able to keep going. Then, the Idaho resident remembered the message he was holding. "I carried a sign with me that said, 'Anything is possible,'" Kempel said. "I repeat that phrase all the time — and it seems to be working. The other day, my daughter was like, 'I can't lift this,' and then she stopped and said, 'Wait — anything is possible.'" Kempel earned a Guinness World Record for his run — his second, having also received one in 2019 when he pushed the quintuplets in a marathon.
Minnesota news station discovers rare footage of 11-year-old Prince
As he watched archival footage shot in Minneapolis in April 1970, WCCO production manager Matt Liddy noticed a familiar face, belonging to a little boy who would become a musical icon. The footage was taken during a strike by Minneapolis Public Schools educators, and featured interviews with several kids, including one that looked exactly like Prince, who grew up in Minneapolis and went by the nickname "Skipper." In the interview, the boy, who never said his name, is asked for his thoughts on the strike, and he replied that teachers should "get some more money" because of their hard work. The team at WCCO wanted to know for sure if it was Prince, and after some detective work, met one of Prince's childhood friends, Terrance Jackson. Jackson, who also performed in Prince's first band, Grand Central, instantly recognized the children in the video — including Prince. "That is Prince!" he said. "Standing right there with the hat on, right? That's Skipper!" There was no denying it, he told WCCO: The boy in the film was "Prince, aka Skipper to the Northside."
Scientists finish sequencing a complete human genome
For the first time, scientists have sequenced a complete human genome, a landmark feat that will help researchers better understand how DNA is different from person to person and the role genetics play in disease. In 2003, the Human Genome Project announced it had sequenced 92 percent of the human genome, and over the last two decades, a team of nearly 100 scientists has worked to fully reveal the remaining 8 percent. "Having this complete information will allow us to better understand how we form as an individual organism and how we vary not just between other humans but other species," research leader Evan Eichler of the University of Washington told CNN. The newly uncovered genes are highly complex, and in the last 10 years, two new DNA sequencing technologies were developed that allowed researchers to crack their codes. The research was published last week in the journal Science.
Dog brothers adopted in different states are reunited, thanks to DNA testing
Many long-lost siblings have been reunited because of DNA ancestry tests — and that goes for canines, too. Andrea Riggle of Houston, Texas, adopted a dog named Renlee about the same time Melanie Morrison of Springfield, Oregon, adopted a dog named Sir Lancelot. Wanting to know more about Renlee's breed background, Riggle did a Wisdom Panel DNA test on him, but didn't log back into the website to learn more information. Morrison used the same DNA test on Sir Lancelot, but did click on the "relatives" tab and found out he had a brother: Renlee. Morrison was able to connect with Riggle via Instagram, and soon the women were planning a brother reunion in Los Angeles. They documented their journeys to California, capturing Renlee and Sir Lancelot swimming in hotel pools and lounging in beds. On the day of the reunion, the brothers — who share a mom and dad and were likely from the same litter — immediately ran to each other and started to play, their tails wagging the entire time.