It wasn't all bad!

The week's good news: October 12, 2017

It wasn't all bad!

1

Illinois man who was once paralyzed from the neck down finishes his 20th marathon

Hours after the winner crossed the finish line, the last spectator went home, and the sun had set, Alan Robinson completed the Chicago Marathon. It was Robinson's 20th marathon since a car accident in 1991 left him paralyzed from the neck down. "I was not supposed to be able to stand up," he told ABC 7. After putting in grueling work at a rehabilitation center, Robinson was able to slowly walk again and even started to run 11 years ago. It took Robinson more than 15 hours to finish Sunday's Chicago Marathon, but he was never alone; a team of supporters took turns walking with Robinson and getting him food and water. Robinson has a heart condition, and said that the Chicago Marathon was his final race.

2

Man helps save kidnapped girl, then gives her the reward money

A Minnesota man not only rescued a kidnapped teenager, he then gave her his $7,000 reward. Earl Melchert, 65, was driving by his lakeside property when he saw a female figure in the distance. He recognized her as Jasmine Block, 15, whose face had been all over the news since she'd been abducted from her home 29 days before. Block had escaped her three kidnappers, and swam across the lake to reach Melchert's house. He took her in until the police arrived. When they presented him with a check as his reward, he decided dinner with Block's family would suffice, and gave them the money instead. "It's the best thing I've ever done," he told The New York Times. "The family needs the money. To me, yeah, that's a lot of money, but they need it way worse than I do."

3

Police officer donates kidney to boy she'd never met before

After seeing a Facebook post from a mom desperate to find her 9-year-old son a kidney donor, Lindsey Bittorf couldn't get the message out of her head. Bittorf, a police officer from Rock County, Wisconsin, decided to get tested to see if she could donate her kidney to Jackson Arneson. It turned out she was a perfect match. Arneson was born with posterior urethral valves, which usually causes kidney damage, and is doing well post-transplant. "He is so strong and brave," Bittorf told People. "I am just in awe of him. He calls me his best friend now. It's amazing that we went from being complete strangers to best friends." Arneson, who hopes to go back to school in a few weeks, said the kidney "is the very best gift I will ever receive. I'm going to take extra, extra good care of it."

4

Football team makes sure elderly supporters get to watch homecoming parade

Winner, South Dakota, is a small town, and the high school's homecoming parade is a big deal. That's why, when the entire Winner High School football team made sure everyone at the Winner Regional Healthcare Center Long-Term Care facility attended the parade, it left residents "flabbergasted." Many of the elderly residents are alumni of the school, and before the parade, they made pennants and pom-poms to cheer the team on. The residents were "ecstatic" when the football players arrived, ready to push them in their wheelchairs to and from the parade route, Jody Engel, hospital communications director, told ABC News. "To be able to participate in something that is so much a part of the thread of the community makes them feel real again," she said. Homecoming also ended on a high note for the team — they won the game 38-13.

5

Rhode Island man keeps growing record-setting giant fruits and vegetables

This weekend, Joe Jutras finally broke the record he's been eyeing for 10 years: His green squash weighed in at 2,118 pounds, making it the world's largest. Jutras has been wanting to smash this record since 2007, when he made headlines for growing the world's biggest pumpkin (1,689 pounds). That record has since been broken (so has his 2006 record for longest gourd, at 126.5 inches), but the Rhode Island man is the first person to win world records in three of the most competitive growing categories. "It feels great," he told The Associated Press. "It's really been a goal of mine to try to achieve this." Jutras is now looking at the bushel gourd to hopefully get him a fourth title. "I think the record now is about 279 pounds," Jutras said. "That might be something I might want to get into a bit."

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