Friday’s Heroes: A Frank Edition

Happy Friday to all! As Marco announced last week, this is my meager attempt to occupy the big chair during his absence as he galivants to somewhere unknown to spread his goodwill, wit, and charm. I suspect he is attending a symposium sponsored by the International Institute on Sarcasm. Meanwhile, onto the heroes who are examples of goodness in the world.

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The Olympics provides a plethora of outstanding stories about humanity’s good side – so here’s one more with multiple heroes. Miloszek Malysa is an eight-month-old Polish boy needing life-saving heart surgery, so the family started a fundraising page to pay for surgery in the USA (at Stanford U). Maria Andrejczyk, a silver-medalist Javelin thrower, stepped forward by auctioning her metal from the recent Tokyo games. The Polish convenience store chain Żabka won the bid that supplied about one-third of the goal, then declined to accept the metal from Maria because they thought it rightfully belongs with her.

From the Holy Shit Department, here’s a story with multiple heroes. Lindsay Bull is an employee at a Utah petting zoo. While working with Darthgator, the large reptile decided to snack on Bull’s hand. With her hand in his mouth and instead of pulling, Bull entered the water and rolled as the alligator tried to dismember her. Donnie Wiseman, an innocent observer, not only enters the area but also wrestles the alligator, and then pries the mouth open so Bull can remove her hand. Another bystander, Todd Christopher, encouraged Bull and helped pull her out. Amy Christopher’s nursing background helped treat Bull until the EMTs arrived. By the way, Bull is anxious to return to work after she heals.

I must include an honoree from Cincinnati. In summer 2018, six-year-old Payton started a lemonade stand to buy new toys for patients at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center because she received a new teddy bear when she was a patient. She repeated the venture in 2019. Today, Payton’s Lemonade Stand is a foundation and 25 stands exist across Greater Cincinnati this past summer … and children host all of them. Cheers to Payton for starting a chain reaction.

A 1992 car accident left Sabrina Cohen as a quadriplegic at age 14. Today she is the founder and president of the Sabrina Cohen Foundation, an organization focusing on meeting fitness and recreation needs for the disabled – especially the beach and the warm waters of Miami. A tip of the hat to Sabrina, her foundation, and all the volunteers for all the goodness they share.

During the virus lockdown’s peak, we in the US received daily briefings from a governor. Unlike federal officials, the governors (at least that I saw) also had a sign language interpreter present on the screen. Now that I have twin great-nieces with hearing disorders, I appreciate those signers much more than I already did. A shout out to these public servants!

Marc returns soon. Although I’m on blog break, I invite you to stop by Beach Walk Reflections. Enjoy your weekend.

Heroes: The Kids Edition

Hello Friday to Marc’s flock. Frank here as a stand-in to your normal host. Well, he asked me and I agreed. Part of the deal was that I follow Dale. Geez – always a tough act to follow.

Art Linkletter had a phrase, “Kids say the darndest things.” They always have and they always will. However, they also do the darndest things. So much so, adults can learn lessons from their actions.

Avi Gupta is 18-year-old and the reigning Jeopardy Teen Tournament Champion. Toss in his passion as a software engineer, he’s off-the-charts smart – plus has a big heart. The US Food and Drug Administration recently approved his design for a low-cost ventilator. If that’s not enough, the plans are Open Source and he has established a charity to make his design available through the world for people in need. No video, but here’s an article.

Daisy Watt (Norwich, England) is 10. Four years ago she did a painting to bring some cheer to her grandparents during their fight with cancer. Mom noticed Daisy’s surprising talent, then asked Daisy if she would like to paint more as a cancer charity. Long story short, “Mini Monet” has raised over $12,000 (US$) for her efforts.

Taran Tien (Clintonville, Ohio) is 10. As the short report notes that the kid is musically talented – but it’s his heart that matters the most. Several times a week, he sets up in his yard for an impromptu concert playing for tips that will go for the International Rescue Committee supporting refugees across the globe.

But low and behold, this is not my first encounter with Taran. Back in March, I saw this report about what he and his sister did for a neighbor. I didn’t put these two together until preparing this post.

Robbie Gray (Palm Coast, Florida) is nine years old. In his brief time alive, he has been hospitalized several times with brain injuries and passed from one foster family to another. A family adopted Robbie two years ago and they discovered Robbie has a soft spot for dogs at the shelter. Not just any dog – but especially old dogs.

Sometimes it’s best to let the kids do the driving. On second thought, a bad idea. But I’ll give and let these kids show the way by riding shotgun to navigate as I drive on the road of goodness.