By Nanci Dixon
In the midst of an abundance of bad news – rising COVID numbers, unemployment, evictions, homelessness and hunger – some good news stories still bubble to the surface.
We find ourselves mostly posting bad, sad or frustrating news in our Sunday newsletter. It’s not our fault, of course, but we want to make sure you come here and smile too. That’s why we’re bringing you this “Good News” column.
“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” —Winston Churchill
Good news for Buzz Lightyear and Hagen
Southwest Airlines did go to infinity and beyond for a young boy that lost his best buddy, Buzz Lightyear, on a flight. When the plane finally made it to its final destination, Little Rock, Arkansas, Jason, a ramp agent, noticed Buzz. Jason knew that someone was missing his friend. Buzz even had a name, Hagen, written on the bottom of his boot – just like in the “Toy Story” movies.
Another airline employee, Beth, and Jason found only one “Hagen” on board the Southwest flight and had a plan. Buzz would have an adventure before returning to California and the toddler missing him.
A few days later, Hagen and his family received a decorated box in the mail worthy of any space ranger. There were pictures of Buzz in a number of places around the airport and a note.
Hagen’s mom, Ashley said, “There’s definitely not enough good in this world, and for someone to take the time out of their day to do that for strangers means the world to us.”
“When you learn, teach. When you get, give.” —Maya Angelou
Street musician Adam Kightlinger was performing music on a California street. Passersby were enjoying the music and giving him a good amount of cash while he played.
He noticed three homeless men also enjoying his music, giving him a thumbs up while he was playing and a broad smile when done. Soon one of the homeless men asked for a dollar for a breakfast sandwich.
Adam looked at all the money in his case, about $65, and told the man to take it all. The man, Michael Briggs, began to cry and wanted to know why Adam would give him all his money. Adam said, “You are hungry and in a few hours you will be hungry again.”
Briggs only took a dollar for a sandwich. Briggs brought another man up who asked for three dollars. Adam repeated the offer to take all the money. Two men then asked if they could distribute the money. Soon Adam met 10 people who shared the money among them. Turns out, all 10 of them were veterans and had served from 10-25 years.
Briggs has a one-room apartment that his son pays for, and he opens the door for others on the street needing a bed or the floor to sleep on.
A passerby overheard everything and handed Adam $30 to take care of himself, too.
“The disability is not the problem. The accessibility is the problem.” —Mohamed Jemni
Losing a limb is devastating. Prosthetics offer hope to return to a sense of normalcy. White skin tones have been the type primarily available and adds to the devastation of losing a limb and needing prosthetics for anyone with a darker skin tone.
When John Amanam’s brother lost his hand, John, a sculptor and past movie special effects artist, began learning and experimenting with creating a prosthesis that would match his brother’s skin tone.
He found that there was no one doing that in Nigeria, or anywhere in the world. When he posted a photo of the hand, requests began coming in from around the world.
The good news is that Amanam’s company, Immortal Cosmetic Art, now has seven employees and makes prostheses by hand for more than 200 people across the world, with a waiting list of over 100. Amanam said that his client’s reaction is one of “excitement and gratitude.”
And, of course, this week’s cute animal videos…
A smile from a reader…
Ending this week of good news with a photo one of our readers, Tim S., submitted. This image of Tim’s wife, Karen S., riding the big walleye at Lake Kabetogama reminds us that travel and fun will happen again.
Read last week’s Good News post here.