1. Virginia Photographer Makes Paralyzed Girl's Dream Come TrueMackenzie Clare was on a prom date with her boyfriend at a Leesburg, Virginia, restaurant when her night became even more magical.
Local photographer Kerri Lane spotted the red-headed teen and thought she would be perfect for a mermaid photo shoot she was planning, reports FOX 5. It wasn’t until after Lane began approaching Clare that she noticed the teen was in a wheelchair.
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Clare was only 10 years old when a car accident left her paralyzed, dashing her dreams of becoming a model. "She would say nobody's ever going to want me to be a model. I'm in a wheelchair and I can't do all the things models need to do," her mother Lisa Clare told FOX 5. For Lane, however, the wheelchair was not a problem. Clare was still the perfect model for her mermaid shoot, which took place last Saturday. And it looks like that photo shoot was just the start: By Monday morning, Lane was contacted about another local opportunity for Clare.
2. Oregon Teen Pushes Friend Out of the Path of Suspected Drunk DriverKameron Howell-Meeker and Ellie Fielder were walking to a friend’s birthday party on May 13 when a suspected drunk driver headed straight for them. Instinctively, Howell-Meeker pushed Fielder out of the path of the car, which left only him to absorb the impact of the collision. After his body flipped three times, Howell-Meeker landed face-down, reports KPTV.
Witnesses phoned 911 and prevented the driver from fleeing the scene. When the paramedics arrived, hero Howell-Meeker asked them just one thing: "Is Ellie OK? I got hit by the car, but did she? Did I push her far enough?"
Fielder is fine, but it will reportedly take Howell-Meeker up to a year to recover from his injuries. "The doctors say I have three torn ligaments, a broken pelvis and compressed fractures in my spine," Howell-Meeker told KPTV. For her part, Fielder is grateful. "This is a friend that I will have forever. I do consider him my hero, if it weren't for him I wouldn't be here," she said.
3. Iowa Nonprofit Helps Save, and Preserve, BarnsFarming, like most industries, is undergoing rapid change. But a group in Iowa is dedicated to preserving a piece of farming history, reports WHO TV. The Iowa Barn Foundation has been restoring classic barns for 17 years.
"Now is the hour,” Iowa Barn Foundation member, Kelly Tobin, told WHO, "we need to give them help right away.” The barns often require anywhere from $30,000 to $70,000 worth of renovations. The foundation foots about half the bill, as long as the barn still serves an agricultural purpose.
"If you think about it,” Craig Pfantz, who reacquired his great-grandfather’s farm, told WHO TV, "when you go through life, what you leave behind is really what represents you.”
4. Tennessee Police Officer Rescued from Violent Attack By Passing Truck DriverA Memphis, Tennessee, police officer survived a violent assault this past Sunday, thanks to the quick actions of a passing truck driver Kenneth Campbell, reports WREG. The driver first encountered the assailant at a grocery store where he was making a delivery. The man began beating on the truck with his bare hands. Campbell quickly called 911 and the man ran away.
The responding police officer stopped the man roughly a block from the store. While trying to get him to sit in the squad car, the man lurched at the officer and started choking him.
But the truck driver had followed in his truck and told 911 to quickly send additional help: "If they would have been ten minutes longer, five minutes…I couldn’t have promised you what would have happened,” Campbell told WREG.
5. Washington Community Raises $25,000 for Toddler’s Prosthetic ArmsTwo-year-old Jameson Davis was born without arms, but now he has prosthetic ones thanks to the generosity of his Spokane, Washington, community.
The special myo-electric prosthetic arms cost $100,000. While insurance paid for most of it, the kindness of strangers helped cover $25,000, reports KXLY. Jameson’s prosthetics have sensors that detect movement from existing muscles. "So in the simplest terms, if he just flexes his little biceps, it will open and close the hand," Jameson’s father Jim told KXLY.
Jameson is learning to use his new arms. He will have to be refitted every few years as he grows. His parents are thankful for the donations. "There are great people in Spokane and they're willing to help," said Jim.