Good News Pushes Bad Out of the Headlines… at Least for One Day

It’s nearly impossible to look at a newspaper, go online, or turn on a radio or TV anymore without seeing bad news.

It’s everywhere. From extreme weather making people homeless, to folks suffering from oppression, to hunger and riots and war… just to name a few.

Now, it’s important to report these types of stories. They are real, and we have a right to know about them.

But I think it drags us down when all we hear is negative news. There have to be a few positive news stories out there, right?

WWII Vet Turns 96

Fortunately, there are. And I’d like to tell a few of them to you today. I think you’ll find them heartwarming. And a nice departure from the bad news we usually hear about.

Duane Sherman is a World War II veteran and Purple Heart recipient living in Fullerton, California. Back in 1941, he enlisted in the Navy shortly after Pearl Harbor was attacked.

He was stationed aboard the USS Lamson. That was a destroyer involved in several battles in the Pacific Ocean.

Recently he was approaching his 96th birthday. Because he has outlasted nearly all his friends, Duane wasn’t expecting to receive cards and well wishes from many folks other than family members.

50,000+ Well Wishes Pour In

His daughter, Sue Morse, decided to do something about that. She posted a request on Facebook. It asked her friends to send Duane a card. She said she was hoping for about 160 responses.

But the request went viral. Duane was given more than 50,000 letters and cards, according to the Orange County Register newspaper.

They arrived from all 50 states and 10 other countries. Many of the senders thanked Duane for his service to his country.

Among those sending him notes were everyone from prison inmates to elementary school children.

Navy Officers Reach Out

Even the Secretary of the Navy responded. As well as the Pittsburgh Steelers football team.

Some people even visted Duane including a commander of the USS Cowpens and several of his officers. As well as a group of officers from the U.S. Navy Sonar School in San Diego.

Some of the mail Duane got also included mementos. Including an American flag that flew over Pearl Harbor and a plaque carved out of wood from the USS Constitution.

As of earlier this month, Sue had read 1,700 of the letters to her father. She still has a ways to go, and Duane is enjoying every minute of it.

Purple Heart Goes Missing

Have you ever given something away and then wished you hadn’t? As bad as that feeling is, it feels even worse to accidentally give something away that really meant something to you.

That’s what happened to Natalya Cox, the wife of a World War II veteran named Marvin Cox. She lives in southern Illinois.

Natalya recently donated some items to a Goodwill store in St. Louis. But then she discovered she had accidentally included five of her late husband’s World War II medals. Including a Purple Heart.

Fortunately, Goodwill employees found the medals and traced them back to her husband.

Goodwill Employees Deliver

The people from Goodwill then placed the medals in a decorative framed case and returned them to Natalya.

“I still could not imagine how I put that box with the medals in there,” said the Ukraine native.

“I’m very thankful that people could investigate and return it to me. I can put (the case) on a wall and display it. It’s very nice.”

A St. Louis native, Marvin had served in World War II in his late teens. He was wounded in combat when an explosion burned his face.

Firefighter Rescues Old Glory

After serving eight years with the U.S. Navy, Allen Skomer fully understood the importance of preserving the American flag.

The firefighter was battling a blaze recently at a home in Toledo, Oklahoma. He and a fellow firefighter were sending a stream of water between that home and an adjoining structure so that the second building would not burn.

That’s when he noticed a flag flying between the two buildings. With flames behind it.

Skomer quickly grabbed the flag, and the house caved in. The flag was one of the few items to survive the blaze.

He then carried it carefully so it wouldn’t touch the ground. And laid it on the bumper of the fire truck.

Vietnam Vet Cherished Flag

Later, Skomer learned that the home he was trying to salvage belonged to a Vietnam veteran.

“I didn’t want to let it burn, so I went and grabbed it,” Skomer said. “It’s just a knee-jerk reaction. I would never knowingly let the flag go up in smoke or be desecrated in front of me if I can help it.”

As it turns out, the flag was one of the Vietnam’ veteran’s prized possessions. Neighbors said the homeowner is a kind man who feeds the homeless in his community.

It’s nice to know that people are still doing good things for others. Including many who never get any recognition for it.

And despite not hitting the news often, I’m glad that some of these stories make the cut. Because we can all use some good news once in a while.

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