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Uplifting

Mall Santa Spots a WWII Veteran in the Crowd. What Happens Next Is Amazing.

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As we go about our busy days during the Christmas season, there are thousands of sweet or life-changing moments we miss when we don’t stop to notice the little things. Facebook user Gina Stecher Wilbur experienced this firsthand when she noticed something unusual about the Santa actor at her local mall.

Wilbur shared in a now-viral Facebook post that while she was at the Concord Mall in Wilmington, Delaware, she stopped for a rest on a bench near a Santa’s Workshop attraction, she enjoyed a brief moment of people-watching.

What she saw next was an extraordinarily simple yet heartwarming incident.

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“…Took a second to sit on a bench near Santa’s workshop… then Santa steps away from his Chair,” Wilbur explained in her post. “He walks over to a veteran sitting on the wall…”

“As Santa approaches, the veteran stands and Santa takes a knee,” she continued. “I hear Santa telling the gentleman, in a soft voice, of others he knew who served. He shakes his hand with genuine gratefulness thanking him for his service and returns to the children.”

Wilbur described the touching display of honor and respect the “best moment of [her] day.”

Christmas shopping with Cavan and took a second to sit on a bench near Santa’s workshop… then Santa steps away from…

Posted by Gina Stecher Wilbur on Saturday, December 1, 2018

Wilbur noted in a statement to FOX29 that she wasn’t the only one who had noticed the Santa’s kind heart. “Others were commenting of heartwarming stories about Santa and how he impacted them; always greeting and respecting veterans, signing to deaf children and holding the sleeping babies.”

“I even received a Facebook message from Mrs. Claus boasting about her kind, endearing husband we all call Santa,” she added. “If you are looking for the real Santa, I know him!”

Not long after her post went viral, the veteran’s daughter reached out to Wilbur identified him as 93-year-old Bob Smiley, who served under General George S. Patton.

After the moment was shared by millions across the nation, Wilbur, Smiley, and the anonymous Santa met at the mall for a reunion.

What an absolutely unforgettable, incredible day… and it’s only 8am! So much to say but I’m soaking it in.. for now. I am in awe.

Posted by Gina Stecher Wilbur on Thursday, December 6, 2018

“We owe a debt of gratitude to men like this, that have made such a life-changing decision to give up themselves, be willing to lay down their life even, for other people,” Santa told FOX29.

“This picture is no longer just an image but a photograph that came to life,” Wilbur shared with the news outlet. “It goes so much deeper because of those two men.”

“They have led lives that will leave legacies and we are all getting a glimpse of it now. In a world full of so much negativity, I truly think we have to seek the positive,” she commented. “There are genuinely good people all around us, doing great things. It’s all about perspective. We just need to choose to see it and share it.”

 

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Uplifting

Rhino Poacher Meets a Poetic Fate, Complete with Elephants, Lions, and Revenge

If this isn’t justice, I don’t know what is.

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Greed is a hell of a drug. Greed is what makes a wealthy man and addicted man.  It’s the idea that you can never have enough, no matter the consequences to the world around you. Don’t get me wrong: Winning and achieving are great, but there are costs to be considered. For wildlife poachers, the reward is dirty money…and lots of it.  Items such as rhinoceros horns can go for as much as $60k per kilo – an amount that makes cocaine look like over-the-counter DayQuil in comparison. Of course, the reason for this enormous price tag is the rarity of the item, with poachers having nearly caused the extinction of several species of Rhinoceros over the course of the last few decades. But, as Jeff Goldblum famously says in the 90’s blockbuster Jurassic Park, “life finds a way”. One poacher in Africa has learned that lesson the very hard way. Only a skull and a pair of trousers remained after a suspected rhino poacher was killed by an elephant and then eaten by lions in Kruger National Park, South African National Parks said. The incident happened after the man entered the park with four others to target rhinos, according to a parks service statement released Friday. His family were notified of his death late Tuesday by his fellow poachers, and a search party led by Kruger’s regional manager, Don English, set out to recover the body. Rangers scoured on foot and police flew over the area, but due to failing light, it could not be found. The poacher likely didn’t deserve such dignity, but the search went on. The search resumed Thursday morning and, with the help of added field rangers, what was left of his body was discovered. “Indications found at the scene suggested that a pride of lions had devoured…

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Uplifting

Police Seek Teens who Interacted with Autistic Skateboarder for BEST REASON EVER

Police are searching for a few teens that left the mother of an autistic child in tears at a local skatepark…but for all the right reasons.

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skateboard

Life is ostensibly difficult for teens and young adults in ways that many of us adults seem to have forgotten. Hopefully, (and luckily, if so), we grow out of these hormonal adolescent years with a bit of an even keel, able to keep a cool head, and fully aware of our strengths and weaknesses.  Sure, we have bills and the complexities of work/friend/partner relationships to navigate, as well as a whole glut of strange, “as you get older” family issues to deal with, but we at least get to do so as adults with a full understanding of our faculties and abilities. For teens and young people, it’s not that easy.  At these ages, human beings are insecure, unsure, and downright dumbfounded by the world around them.  And, let’s not forget, that kids can be severely cruel to one another over the most asinine of subjects.  Style, mannerisms, and intelligence are all fodder for the teenaged bullies of the world. For children on the autism spectrum, things are even tougher.  These are the “weirdoes” and “nut jobs” that the heartless bullies rail on, making them the bread and butter of these jerks’ daily dissing. So when the mother of an autistic son named Carter began crying at a local New Jersey skatepark, many feared the worst. Lucky for all of us, there is still some good left in this world. Kristen Braconi took Carter, who is on the autism spectrum and has ADHD, and his behavioral therapist to the park to celebrate his fifth birthday, where a group of older kids noticed him playing on his scooter. The teens took it upon themselves to teach Carter how to skateboard. “They were absolutely amazing with him and included him and were so beyond kind it brought me to tears,” the mother shared on Facebook,…

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