The week's good news: April 15, 2021
It wasn't all bad!
Fraternity brothers surprise beloved cook by paying off her mortgage
Officially, Jessie Hamilton was a cook at the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity house at Louisiana State University, but she was also a therapist, cheerleader, and friend. Starting in 1982, Hamilton worked at the Phi Gamma Delta (also known as Fiji) house for 14 years, and was always ready to lend an ear and offer advice. "She was truly like a mother to us," Fiji brother Andrew Fusaiotti told The Washington Post. Hamilton has worked two jobs for decades, and several brothers who kept in touch with her decided for her 74th birthday this month, they were going to give Hamilton the gift of retirement. More than 90 brothers donated a total of $51,764 — enough for Hamilton to pay off her mortgage, and then some. On April 3, they surprised Hamilton with their gift. "If I hadn't been sitting, I would have fell down," she told the Post. Hamilton has put in notice at her jobs, and plans on traveling to visit the Fiji brothers.
Students celebrate their cafeteria manager after she passes U.S. citizenship test
The kids at Deer Creek-Prairie Vale Elementary School in Edmond, Oklahoma, threw a star-spangled celebration last week for their cafeteria manager, Yanet Lopez, when she passed the U.S. citizenship test. Lopez, her husband, and their three children came to the U.S. from Cuba in 2016. As a child, Lopez said, her "dream was [to] come to this great country," and she was thrilled when her entire family passed their citizenship tests. "I know everything about the United States," Lopez told KOCO. "Constitution, presidents, everything. It's amazing. I learned a lot of history because I love this country." The school's principal wrote on Facebook that the entire campus was "so excited for Ms. Yanet and the realization of one of her dreams," adding she is "one of the best U.S. citizens I know." To congratulate Lopez, students and staff lined the hallways, cheering, giving her hugs and chanting "USA!" It was "really, really exciting," Lopez said.
This Black female pilot is working to get more diversity in the cockpit
Carole Hopson is blazing a trail in the sky, showing other Black women that they belong in the cockpit. The Federal Aviation Administration says that Black women make up less than 1 percent of all certified pilots, and Hopson — a pilot with United Airlines — is one of them. As a kid, Hopson spent summers mesmerized by the planes taking off and landing at Philadelphia International Airport. She launched a career in human resources, but after taking flying lessons, Hopson changed course and took to the skies, becoming a full-time pilot with United in 2018. United is launching a flight school to train 5,000 pilots by 2030, with half of them being women and people of color, and Hopson is working to get 100 Black women enrolled. She is excited about this challenge, telling People, "Watching the sunrise above the clouds never gets old. That experience is one we should be exposing all women to."
Man runs from Disneyland to Disney World for diabetes awareness
Don Muchow ran the roughly 2,800 miles from Disneyland to Disney World not because he really wanted to see Mickey Mouse — the Texan did it to show other people with Type 1 diabetes "there are safe ways to do even epic things." Muchow, 59, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 1972, and told not to exercise. Decades later, when he started experiencing health issues linked to his diabetes, he found it was necessary to become active, and was soon completing 5Ks, 10Ks, marathons, and Iron Man triathlons. Pre-pandemic, Muchow planned a run from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic, which turned into a Disneyland to Disney World journey. At the 1,260-mile mark, he had to take a break because of the pandemic, but in March, Muchow was ready to finish. Last Tuesday, he made it to Disney World, where he was greeted with cheers, and the next day, he ended his run in Melbourne, Florida, where he dipped his toe in the Atlantic.
3,000-year-old lost city unearthed in Egypt
Archaeologists searching for King Tutankhamen's mortuary temple made an even bigger discovery, as they unearthed Aten, a 3,000-year-old lost city believed to have been founded by King Amenhotep when he ruled ancient Egypt. In September, archaeologists started the dig in Luxor between the temples of King Ramses III and Amenhotep III, and after a few weeks, to the "great surprise" of the team, "formations of mud bricks began to appear in all directions," the mission said in a statement. "What they unearthed was the site of a large city in good condition of preservation, with almost complete walls, and with rooms filled with tools of daily life." To date the settlement, the team looked at hieroglyphic inscriptions etched on pottery, scarabs, and wine vessels. They have found houses, tombs, a bakery, a workshop containing molds used to make amulets, and a cemetery, the mission said, "left by the ancient residents as if it were yesterday."