The week's good news: June 8, 2017
It wasn't all bad!
Canadian family drops everything, drives 16 hours to adopt dog
The Front Street Animal Shelter in Sacramento, California, was so crowded last month it didn't have enough room to take in any additional cats or dogs in need. The shelter posted about its dilemma on Facebook, and also shared the story of Joyce, who had been there for two months and was "sadly watching people pass her by for other dogs." That's all one family from British Columbia had to hear; they got into their car and drove 16 hours south to Sacramento, where they went straight to the shelter to adopt Joyce. She is the "perfect fit" for the family, the shelter said, and "her future looks amazing."
World War II veteran donates stock worth $2 million to wildlife sanctuary
In 1953, Russel Gremel purchased 20 shares of Walgreens stock for $1,000. More than six decades later, that stock is worth $2 million, and it's financing a haven for birds and wildlife in Illinois. Gremel, a World War II and Korean War veteran, former lawyer, and retired Scoutmaster, is 98 years old, and with his health declining, he wanted to make a lasting contribution to the community. He's always loved nature and taught his Boy Scouts about conservation, so he chose to turn his shares over to the Illinois Audubon Society. "He's an American hero, he's my hero, and a hero to so many others," Tom Clay, executive director of the Illinois Audubon Society, told ABC News. The Gremel Wildlife Sanctuary in Dixon covers 395 acres, and Gremel said he hopes that "generations of young land stewards and bird enthusiasts will visit and enjoy the sanctuary."
Illinois man leaps into moving car to save driver having a seizure
When Randy Tompkins saw a car driving slowly toward him on a Dixon, Illinois, street last Friday, the driver convulsing, he acted fast. Tompkins, 39, pulled over, leapt out of his truck, and ran over to the car, jumping through its open window. He pulled the emergency brake and put two fingers in the driver's mouth so he wouldn't swallow his tongue. The driver was then taken to the hospital as a precaution. A police dashcam caught the entire incident on tape, and authorities are praising Tompkins for his quick thinking and bravery.
NYPD sergeant connects with the community through classical music
Over the course of a decade, New York Police Sgt. Chris Yip went from not knowing how to play a note to being a classically trained pianist who performs at venues across the city to benefit nonprofit organizations. Yip had always wanted to learn to play the piano, but money was tight in his immigrant family. In 2007, while on patrol outside the Brooklyn Music School, the music he heard flowing out of the building pushed him to finally take lessons. He soon realized that as he played, the stress of his job evaporated. After years of practicing and weekly lessons, Yip, 37, decided to start holding benefit concerts to raise money for scholarships and City Harvest. "I can use the performance to help someone else," he told People. "As officers, we see people who really could use some assistance."
94-year-old racer becomes oldest woman to run a half-marathon
Harriette Thompson nonchalantly raced into the record books Sunday when the 94-year-old became the oldest woman to run a half-marathon. "I guess it's unusual, but I don't know why people make such a big deal," she told NBC 7 after finishing the Rock 'N' Roll Marathon in San Diego. "I feel just like I did when I was 16. But I just can't move as fast." This isn't Thompson's first record — in 2015, she became the world's oldest woman to complete a full marathon. Thompson is a two-time cancer survivor, and uses races to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society; she has brought in $100,000 over the last few years, and $15,000 so far in 2017.