It wasn’t all bad
Beverly Wedelstedt had just summited Colorado’s 14,000-foot Grays Peak when her knee popped, sending her tumbling to the ground. A doctor on the trail diagnosed her with a torn ACL and fashioned a makeshift splint. But all Wedelstedt, 55, could think about was how she was going to get down the mountain. Then a hiker stepped forward and offered to help. He hoisted Wedelstedt across his shoulders and, taking turns with eight other strangers, carried her fireman style along the 2.5-mile trail to a rescue center. “It was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen,” Wedelstedt said.
After 82 grueling days at sea, a former British Royal Marine has become the first blind person to row across the Pacific. Steve Sparkes, 57, and his rowing companion, Mick Dawson, 54, were the third of five teams to complete this year’s Great Pacific Race—a 2,400-mile voyage from Monterey, Calif., to Hawaii. Their 22-foot carbon-fiber boat, Bojangles, was battered by storms on the journey, and Sparkes, who lost his sight following a diving accident in his 20s, was at one point knocked overboard and only saved by his tether. Sparkes hopes his feat will inspire other blind people, saying, “If I can do this, what can’t I do?”
A California doctor gave her partner an unexpected “kiss” on their first date—by performing lifesaving CPR on him. Andi Traynor, 45, had gone surfing with new flame Max Montgomery, 56, last October, but after leaving the water Montgomery collapsed from a heart attack. Kneeling in the sand, Traynor performed CPR on him for seven minutes until paramedics arrived and took him to the hospital, where he underwent surgery. Nearly a year later, the couple’s relationship is going strong and they have started a nonprofit to teach others CPR. “My heart has been healed inside and out,” Montgomery said. “I feel very blessed.”