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Mother, daughter graduate college together after tragedy strikes family

After enduring the loss of a loved one, a mother and daughter from Michigan are marking a happy milestone together.

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Linda and Becky Dancer graduated together this month from Cleary University, WXYZ reported.

For mother Linda, the degree was completed 42 years after she began her higher education. She was prompted to join her daughter in college after her husband, Dan, died suddenly of a heart attack in 2014.

Linda told WXYZ that she worked much harder to earn the degree now than she had when she first started four decades ago.

Mother and daughter are proud of their individual and joint accomplishments. Linda hopes to increase her income and says a master’s degree may be in her future.

Chicago bishop to give address at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding

Kensington Palace announced that Episcopal Church Bishop Michael Bruce Curry from Chicago, Illinois, will give the address at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding on May 19.

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Bishop Curry will travel to Windsor to participate in the royal wedding at St. George’s Chapel. 

“The love that has brought and will bind Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle together has its source and origin in God, and is the key to life and happiness,” Bishop Curry said in a statement. “And so we celebrate and pray for them today.”

The Dean of Windsor, Right Rev. David Conner, will conduct the service. The Most Revd. and Rt. Hon. Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, will officiate as the couple make their marriage vows.

Bishop Curry is author to the best-selling book, ‘Crazy Christians: A Call to Follow Jesus.’

The Episcopal church was established shortly after the American Revolution and has roots in the Anglican Church, known as the Church of England. 

It is part of the international Anglican Communion, led by the Archbishop of Canterbury. 

According to PEOPLE, Meghan’s father, Thomas, is Episcopalian.

Khloe Kardashian shares first video of daughter with Tristan Thompson

Khloe Kardashian shared the first video of newborn daughter True on Instagram Saturday, four weeks after she and NBA boyfriend Tristan Thompson welcomed her to the world on April 12.

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“Happy one month old, mama,” Kardashian said in the video, which features a flower filter on the baby’s cheek. “I love you, pretty girl.” 

True is the first child of the “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” star, 33. 

Thompson, 27, also has a 17-month-old son, Prince Oliver, from a previous relationship. 

Man donates blood weekly for 60 years, saves lives of 2.4 million babies

An Australian man who has spent most of his life donating blood is retiring.

James Harrison has donated blood nearly every week for 60 years. He’s made 1,100 donations, saving the lives of more than 2.4 million Australian babies, according to the Australian Red Cross Blood Service.

Known as the “man with the golden arm,” the 81-year-old’s blood is special. It has disease-fighting antibodies that have been used to develop the Anti-D injection, which helps combat Rhesus D Haemolytic Disease, or HDN.

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The illness occurs when a pregnant woman’s blood begins attacking her unborn baby’s blood cells, causing brain damage or death for the baby.

It develops when the mom has rhesus-negative blood and the infant has rhesus-positive blood, inherited from the father. The different antigens cause the mother’s body to harm the baby. 

Although doctors are unsure why Harrison’s blood contains the rare antibody that fights the disease, they believe it’s likely due to a major chest surgery he had that required a blood transfusion when he was 14. 

Harrison became a blood donor after he recovered from the surgery. Once doctors discovered his blood was one-of-a-kind, he began offering blood plasma donations to help more people. 

Now, it’s time for him to retire. Australia doesn’t allow citizens to donate blood past age 81. 

“I hope it’s a record that somebody breaks, because it will mean they are dedicated to the cause,” Harrison said of his feat. He has received numerous awards for his generosity.

Harrison will continue to help health experts by donating his DNA samples for future research.

“Australia owes a big thank you to James Harrison, Australia became the first country in the world to be self-sufficient in the supply of Anti-D, and cases of HDN are rare,” Australian Red Cross Blood Service spokesperson Jemma Falkenmire said. “We encourage the partners and friends of all new mothers to think about donating blood, just one donation helps ensure someone has the chance to be a mother.”

Pug's apology for howling making some noise

A Pittsburgh pug’s apology for howling when his mom is away from home away has gone viral

Sharla Wilson just moved into a new apartment, and her dog, Charleston Chew, is blind and has trouble seeing around the new place. 

So when Wilson’s away, Charleston howls and makes a lot of noise

His howling prompted his owner to post an apology note on his neighbor’s door. 

The note explains that he’s old and had cataracts and gets scared when his mom’s away. 

One neighbor snapped a picture of the note with the caption, “You can howl all you want Charleston, honey!” 

So far, the tweet has close to 450,000 likes and over 121,000 retweets. 

Kitten abandoned in shelter mailbox looks for new home

A kitten that was abandoned in the mailbox of a Hawthorne, California, animal shelter is now up for adoption.

KABC reported that Brett, a black-and-white domestic short hair kitten, was found in the mailbox March 28 when a staffer heard meowing.

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Brett was 2 weeks old when he was found in the mailbox. According to a Facebook post from the shelter, his condition was touch and go after being in the heat.

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“Abandoning an animal is a crime and very cruel,” spcaLA president Madeline Bernstein told KABC. “The kitten could have easily died inside the mailbox.”

Veterinary staff at the shelter jumped into action to get Brett well. He was put into foster care where he was bottle-fed until he could eat on his own. 

Now 2 months old, Brett is ready for adoption. He was socialized through the shelter’s HEAL Program.

Adoptions at scpaLA are on a first come, first served basis. More information is available at the spcaLA website.

Dog adopted two days from being euthanized, shows love to man who rescued him

A story that could have had a sad ending with a dog being put down now has a happy one after the dog was adopted instead, and he seems to know his new owner saved his life.

Last week, a beagle in Ohio was on the list to be euthanized on Thursday, but luckily, Joe Kirk walked into Gregory the beagle’s life before it ended, WTHR reported.

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Kirk, and his wife Schenley, founded HOUND, or Helping Overlooked Unwanted Neglected Dogs, a nonprofit that places dogs that are considered at-risk in homes. For dogs that don’t find a new home, HOUND is a lifelong sanctuary.

Gregory seemed to know what Kirk did for him, as he snuggled next to his rescuer. Schenley snapped and posted a photo of the grateful dog. 

The Facebook post has been shared more than 9,000 times.

Apparently, Gregory was dropped off at a local animal shelter, but when the shelter found out he had heart worms, he was placed on the euthanasia list, WTHR reported.

Kirk is now seeking treatment for Gregory and will start trying to get him adopted once he’s medically cleared, which is expected to be in about two months, WTHR reported.

Dog waits by damaged car after owner smashes into tree

Talk about loyalty: A man and his dog were in a crash along a road and into a tree in New Jersey. 

Instead of being spooked by the crash and running away, the dog sat down next to the car and waited with his owner, WNBC reported.

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A photo of the patient pup was tweeted by the South Brunswick Police Department, who said they took the owner and the dog -- neither of whom were hurt in the wreck -- to work.  

Girl on horseback braves traffic, chases runaway horse

This is something definitely you don’t expect to see just outside Baltimore, but a Maryland teenager braved the traffic to catch a runaway horse.

Video of the horseback chase has gone viral on social media.

It all happened on Maryland state highway 170, WJZ reported. Ice, a thoroughbred, broke free from a halter during a competition and ran away.

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But Caroline Shoults did what she could and jumped on her mare, Tink, and chased after Ice.

“She was coming close to these cars. I mean, it was one little nick and those horse’s legs and everything can be really, really bad. But there just wasn’t enough time to think about that in the moment,” Shoults told WJZ.

But Shoults wasn’t the only one trying to get control of Ice. Drivers used their cars to block traffic near Baltimore Washington International Airport.

No one was hurt and Ice eventually stopped his free run through the roads, WJZ reported.

Student born without hands wins handwriting award

Anaya Ellick was born without hands, but that has not stopped her from taking home a national award for penmanship.

At a time when students are not being taught cursive writing, Anaya, who is 9 years old, won the 2018 Zaner-Bloser National Handwriting Contest for her technique, WVEC reported.

Anaya’s teachers told WVEC that she had the determination to learn cursive so she could compete in the category after winning a similar competition for her printing.

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The Nicolas Maxim Award is given to students with a cognitive delay or some sort of intellectual, physical or developmental disability. Occupational therapists serve as judges who review entries, WVEC reported.

The Zaner-Bloser National Handwriting Contest has awarding students for their writing for more than 30 years. Students in kindergarten through 8th grade can compete for state and nation. 

Kittens rescued from engine, bumper of Florida police car

Two kittens were rescued from underneath a detective’s car in Ocoee, Florida, on Monday morning. 

“These adorable kittens were recovered safely from the engine by our City personnel,” a post on the Ocoee Police Department’s Facebook page said.

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Once they are old enough, the cats will be available for adoption through Orange County Animal Services. 

“This is a great reminder to spay or neuter your pets,” the department posted

Police chief visits girl who offered allowance to grieving officers

Round Rock police Chief Allen Banks returned a young girl’s kind gesture last week with a hug and gifts during a visit to her home.

Ximena, 7, left an envelope under the front door at police headquarters following the funeral of officer Charles Whites on Wednesday. Inside were a hand-written letter and four $1 bills.

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“Thank you for everything you do,” she wrote. “I’m sorry to hear about officer Whites. I wanted to donate my allowance. Love, Ximena.”

While the envelope did not include a return address, Banks was able to find Ximena’s home address and decided to stop by for a quick visit. He brought along a few gifts, including the chief’s CHIP Challenge coin.

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Banks and officers, family and friends have been grieving after the loss of officer Whites, who police said was hit by a vehicle while directing traffic on Interstate 35 on Feb. 25. Raul Martinez faces a charge of intoxication assault causing bodily injury in the incident.

 READ MORE: Officer Charles Whites’ life celebrated at funeral 

Soldier watches birth of daughter on FaceTime when flight home is delayed

This was one time a passenger was grateful his flight was delayed.

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Video of Brooks Lindsey, a soldier watching the birth of his daughter on FaceTime, has gone viral. Lindsey was in El Paso preparing to deploy to Kuwait for a nine-month tour and booked a flight home to Mississippi, when his wife, Haley Lindsey, was induced two weeks early.

In an essay on Love What Matters, Haley Lindsey told the story of the birth and her husband’s reactions.

Brooks Lindsey had flown into Dallas from El Paso, but his flight to Jackson, Mississippi, was delayed. 

“He was scheduled to take off at 3:55 but luckily his flight was delayed to 5:45,” Haley Lindsey wrote.

Haley said that as she began to give birth, her mother-in-law “secretly FaceTimed Brooks” and shoved the phone in front of her shirt.

“When I began to push, the doctor asked what she (mother-in-law) was doing,” Haley wrote. The woman showed the doctor Brooks Lindsey’s face on the screen and the doctor understood immediately what was going on.

Just as the baby was crowning, Brooks Lindsey said he was being urged to board his flight to Mississippi.

The doctor was having none of that.

“All I remember was my doctor screaming, ‘Don’t let him board the flight! She’s here! She’s here!” Haley Lindsey wrote. “So, the airport personnel let him sit there and watch till it was over!”

Millie was born at 5:23 p.m. and weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces. Brooks arrived in Jackson at 7 p.m. and made it to the hospital 20 minutes later, Haley wrote.

“He picked (Millie) up and held her for five minutes and kept saying ‘wow I can’t believe we just had a baby,’” she wrote. 

Tracy Dover, who was traveling with Brooks Lindsey, said the soldier cried as he saw Millie being born.

"When we heard the baby cry, we all rejoiced for him," Dover said in a Facebook post. “I wanted to share this because I never want us to forget about our soldiers who serve us everyday and the sacrifices they make.”

Twins born on May the Fourth get appropriate ‘Star Wars’ names

You’re expecting twins and they’re born on May the Fourth and you’re “Star Wars” fans, what else can you do but name the babies after the most famous twins in the galaxy. 

Kendall and Ross Robbins decided to give their newborns middle names to honor the movie epics, KSTU reported.

Now they’re the proud parents of Rowan Luke and Kai Leia. 

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“We found out we were having a boy and a girl, and we knew that being born May the 4th, they had to be Luke and Leia, at least for their middle names,” Kendall Robbins told KSTU.

Their names aren't the only nod to the movie franchise.

Their nursery is decorated in a style from “A Long Time Ago and a Galaxy Far, Far Away,” KSTU reported.

Police take special-needs students to prom

A group of students in a special-needs program at John I. Leonard High didn’t have dates to prom and felt too uncomfortable to go by themselves. But a group of police officers from Boynton Beach quickly changed their minds.

The off-duty officers dressed in their uniforms and took the students to prom Saturday at the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach.

And they were the perfect dates.

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They brought corsages and boutonnières. They took prom pictures. They danced. Oh, did they dance.

When the group walked in to the room at the Kravis Center they headed straight to the dance floor and showed off their best moves to Kid Cudi’s “Day ‘N’ Nite.”

“The kids didn’t stop dancing and we didn’t stop dancing. We had a blast,” said Stephanie Slater, the police department’s spokeswoman.

Since prom night, photos and videos that Slater posted on the department’s social media have gone viral and landed spots on CNN and in the U.K.

The idea to go to prom came from husband and wife Scott and Sandi Harris. Sandi is a teacher at John I. Leonard and Scott is a retired Boynton police officer who still works at the department as an asset forfeiture specialist.

“We were talking one night about the prom and that they couldn’t go because they didn’t have dates and it would be uncomfortable for them to go with their parents. So we thought ‘what about officers being their dates?’” Scott Harris said.

About 30 officers volunteered to go, Harris said. But they didn’t need that many. So they chose officers Rachel Baldino, Denise Schrecengost, Candice KickingStallionSims and Matthew Vazquez, Investigator Alfredo Vargas, Det. Marco Villari, Officer-in-charge Christine Naulty and sergeants Rayner De Los Rios and CaryAnn Matson. Slater and Harris also attended.

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The police didn’t want the students or their parents to have to pay for prom tickets so they asked around. Boynton-based Beck’s Towing and Recovery paid $500 for the students’ six tickets, Slater said.

The officers met the students at John I. Leonard and then traveled to prom in the police’s black unmarked van.

“As much as it meant to those students, it meant that much more to us, for us to be able to do this for them. Just to see the smiles on their faces. That was pure joy expressed on their faces,” Slater said. “It was just an incredible experience and I think it’s something we’ll all remember for the rest of our lives.”

The students are in the Exceptional Student Education program at the Greenacres school. Students in that program range in age from 15 to 21 and are taught academics and life skills, Harris said.

But that night at prom, there were no differences.

“The students that we brought interacted with the regular ed. students as if they were all one in the same,” Harris said.

Slater added: “There were no barriers between us. There was nothing about their disability that held them back. We got out on that dance floor and we were the same.”

Harris said the student he went to prom with, Lissa Erreira, typically has an introverted personality. She’s deaf and doesn’t see well. At prom, “she was out dancing with me on the dance floor with a smile from ear to ear,” Harris said.

The retired officer hopes that next year John I. Leonard will want to have the officers at prom again, and hopes other schools like Boynton Beach Community High will do the same.

“It was a really great night,” he said.

Oklahoma State University professor's parody of ‘Cups’ song goes viral

Kyle Eastham’s entrepreneurship students are gonna miss him when they’re gone.

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Eastham, a professor at Oklahoma State University, sent a parody video of the “Cups” song to his students before uploading it to Facebook.

“I love teaching at Oklahoma State University! Here’s the end-of-semester video I just sent to my OSU Entrepreneurship students in Spears Business,” Eastham wrote. “It’s not quite Pitch Perfect. Apologies to Anna Kendrick fans.”

Eastham’s a cappella performance, recorded in an empty classroom, uses cups as percussion as he sings:

“Semester’s over, now the grades are in,

Some are happy, some are sad.

But regardless of which letter grade you’ve earned,

I hope that you have learned.”

The song became popular after Kendrick performed it in the 2012 movie “Pitch Perfect.” It is a version of the Carter Family’s 1931 song, “When I’m Gone.”

96-year-old World War II Navy veteran graduates college

A 96-year-old World War II Navy veteran can say mission accomplished after graduating college Saturday. 

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Robert Edgar Barger first took classes at the University of Toledo 68 years ago, shortly after returning from World War II. He stopped attending and started working in order to take care of his wife and two children. 

Decades passed before he met Navy Reserve Lt. Haraz N. Ghanbari, the university’s director of military and veteran affairs, in 2013. They became friends and Ghanbari later learned that Barger had not completed his degree. 

A review of Barger’s transcripts from the 1940s showed that he had enough classes to qualify for an associate of technical studies degree, which was not offered at the time.

"It was something I never dreamed of. I knew I couldn't go back to school now,” Barger, believed to be the oldest graduate from the University of Toledo, said. "I'm going to be proud to hang that diploma on the wall and think about the friends behind it.”

Barger, who has four grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and four great-great grandchildren, planned a party with about 100 people from his retirement community, to celebrate the accomplishment.

"I found out without friends, this old world wouldn't be worth living in," Barger said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

11-year-old boy returns wallet full of cash to stranger

An 11-year-old boy who found a wallet full of cash and credit cards contacted police and returned it to its grateful owner. 

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Redwood City Police shared a photo Sunday of the boy and the wallet, which police said contained a “large sum of cash,” as well as the owner with the wallet after the officer was able to track him down. 

The “very appreciative owner” can be seen flashing a thumbs-up in the photo while holding the wallet in his other hand.

“Nice work, young man,” police officials said.

Comatose boy shows signs of life after parents sign organ donor paperwork

A 13-year-old boy in a vegetative state showed signs of life after his parents signed paperwork to donate his organs. 

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Trenton McKinley was injured while riding in a trailer being pulled by a dune buggy two months ago, according to WALA. He was rushed to the hospital with seven fractures to his skull. 

“All I saw was a stretcher with his feet hanging out. He was dead a total of 15 minutes,” his mother, Jennifer Reindl, recently told WALA. “When he came back, they said he would never be normal again. They told me the oxidation problems would be so bad to his brain, that he would be a vegetable if he even made it.”

Trenton was brain dead and barely breathing for several days, as his parents wrestled with the decision to donate his organs in March. They signed the papers. A day before doctors were going to pull the plug, Trenton showed signs of life.

"There's no other explanation but God,” Trenton said. “There's no other way. Even doctors said it."

Trenton continues to recover at UAB Hospital. He has undergone three brain surgeries, and continues to suffer nerve pain and seizures, according to WALA

"From no brain waves to now walking and talking and reading, doing math. A miracle," Reindl told CBS News.

crowd source funding account was created to help pay for medical costs.

Florida policeman who lost both legs walks at daughter's graduation

After losing both of his legs after a horrific motorcycle accident last year, a Florida policeman walked on new prosthetic limbs during his daughter’s college graduation Thursday night, WTVJ reported.

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By walking with his daughter during graduation ceremonies at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Miami-Dade police Maj. Ricky Carter fulfilled a promise he made after the 23-year veteran of the force was seriously hurt on May 7, 2017.

“Just a year ago, I didn’t think he would be here,” Carter’s daughter, Jennifer Carter, told WTVJ. “To see him stand again felt like old times. It was the best feeling ever."

Ricky Carter was riding his personal motorcycle on I-75 when he crashed into the guardrail.

"I can recall waking up in a hospital bed and seeing broken arms, so I’m trying to move my legs under the covers and my legs aren’t cooperating with the moves I’m trying to make,” he told WTVJ. “So, I lift off the covers and see that I don’t have any legs.”

Carter vowed to learn to walk again for his daughter’s graduation. He spent hours in physical therapy and struggled to reach his goal

"I didn’t know how difficult this journey was going to be,” Carter told WTVJ. “I had no clue.”

But Carter overcame the pain and the struggles and provided his daughter with a memorable moment at the Sun Dome.

“She propelled me to get to what I achieved today. She’s been my motivation," Carter told WTVJ. “I want to be the best man that I can be for her. I (needed) to do this to show her that life has no limitations. That we can still chase our dreams. So, don’t let obstacles or hurdles in your way define you."

GoFundMe page was started for Carter three days after his accident. So far, it has raised more than $86,000.

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