• Rare coin worth $1,800 dropped in Salvation Army kettle

    Just days after the Salvation Army's annual Red Kettle campaign started in Mishawaka, Indiana, a generous Samartian dropped a rare coin into the kettle.

    Bell ringer George Shell discovered a 1904 $20 gold piece in his kettle at the end of his shift at the local Sam's Club. The coin is worth $1,800.

    The coin was wrapped in a white fortune that quoted William Booth, Salvation Army's founder: "Work as if everything depended upon work and pray as if everything depended on prayer."

    WSBT-TV reports that it's the third straight year someone has dropped a valuable coin in a Mishawaka kettle.

    Shell, who has been a bell ringer for 30 years, shared with WBMD the highlights of the position:

    "Well you got to smile, make people happy, and they want to know the bell ringers are there to make people happy and smile. Bring something back for the holiday season because the Salvation Army's been out for a long, long time and I love working with them, they're real good to me," said Shull.

    In Houston,

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  • An officer's simple act of kindness has made him online celebrity, thanks to a snapshot-taking tourist from Arizona.

    Jennifer Foster of Florence, Arizona, was visiting Times Square with her husband on November 14 when she noticed a barefoot man asking for change.

    Officer Lawrence DePrimo, 25, approached the man with a pair of boots and knelt at his side to help him. Foster captured the touching exchange with her cellphone, then submitted the image to the NYPD's official Facebook page.

    By Wednesday, the photo had been viewed more than 1.6 million times.

    "Right when I was about to approach, one of your officers came up behind him. The officer said, 'I have these size 12 boots for you, they are all-weather. Let's put them on and take care of you.' The officer squatted down on the ground and proceeded to put socks and the new boots on this man. The officer expected NOTHING in return and did not know I was watching," she wrote. "I have been in law enforcement for 17 years. I was never

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  • Young friends in Missouri discover they’re brothers

    Isaac Nolting, 12, and Dakotah Zimmer, 13, became fast friends at a Washington, Missouri, swimming pool this summer.

    Mutual friends commented that the pair looked like brothers. They soon discovered they were.

    A video or other embedded content has been hidden. Click here to view it.

    Dakotah knew he had a young brother he'd never met. His sibling was adopted as an infant more than 10 years ago to a woman named Dawn.

    "That's my mom's name," Isaac told his new friend.

    Dakotah told the Missourian he knew his friend, 13 months younger than him, was actually his brother because of one very distinctive feature: "I could tell because of the nose."

    Isaac, however, didn't even know he was adopted.

    "I just didn't know how to tell him," Issac's adoptive mother, Dawn Nolting, told the Missourian. "I never knew when was the best time. I talked with experts and relatives, but never knew when I should do it."

    After his day at the pool with Dakotah, Issac approached his mother with questions about his birth.

    "He took my hand and we went back in the bedroom, sat down, and he

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  • New stress-relief trend at Canadian universities: Puppies!

    "Stressed from exams? Come take a break from studying and exams and play with a dog!" a poster published on the Dalhousie University Student Union's Facebook page encourages.

    During the upcoming exam season at the Halifax university, stressed out students can seek a little relief in a room of playful puppies.

    Also in Halifax, Mount Saint Vincent University has enlisted the help of a pooch named Oscar to encourage students to visit the counsellor's office to process their stress and anxiety.

    This "dog as stress-relief strategy" is relatively new for Canadian universities.

    Last December, McGill students played with therapy dogs thanks to a visit from Therapeutic Paws of Canada.

    "The purpose of the event was to help ease student stress and anxiety during exams," McGill student Amanda Fraser told OpenFile Montreal. "We wanted to provide an opportunity for students to take a break from their hectic schedules and have fun and relax with friendly dogs and volunteers. It is becoming

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  • Swiss Shepherd dog adopts abandoned tiger cubs at Russian zoo

    Two male tiger cubs, Olymp and Dar, and their sister, Tallim, were abandoned by their birth mother at the Russian zoo where they were born on November 14.

    It was the second time this year their mother, tigress Bagira, refused to feed her offspring.

    At first, zoo staff at the Oktyabrsky Zoo in the Black Sea resort of Sochi sought a surrogate tiger mother, but they have since filled the position with a Russian dog, the Telegraph reports.

    Tallim, a white Swiss Shepherd after whom the female cub was named, feeds and nurtures the cubs. Despite a rocky beginning — the cubs hissed and showed their claws at first — the cubs and their surrogate mother are now all getting along.

    Zoo staff reassure that the cubs pose no threat to the dog.

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  • Rajesh Kumar Sharma, 40, offers a free education to New Delhi's slum children under a metro bridge.

    Over 30 local Indian children have been attending his open-air, dirt-floor school since it opened three years ago, NBC News reports.

    See stunning images of his makeshift school here.

    Five days a week, for two hours a day, Sharma leaves his post at his general store — his brother fills in for him — to teach underprivileged children otherwise without access to schooling.

    The father of three quit college due to financial limitations, and didn't want other children to encounter the same situation. So he persuaded local labourers, rickshaw-pullers and farm hands to allow their children to attend his school and give them greater opportunities at overcoming their poverty.

    Sharma teaches children at other locations, too. The Indian Express reports that he started teaching the basics to 140 students, prepping them for admission to government schools. Seventy of them are now in those government

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  • Minnesota grocer gives company to his faithful employees

    Joe Lueken, 70, is ready to say goodbye to the successful grocery store chain he spent 46 years building.

    Instead of selling Lueken's Village Foods to the highest bidder, however, Lueken is transferring ownership of his three stores, two in Bemidji, Minnesota and another in Wahpeton, North Dakota, to his 400 workers through an Employee Stock Ownership Program (ESOP).

    His generous decision won't require the employees to pay anything for their shares, based on length of service and salary, in the company.

    "My employees are largely responsible for any success I've had, and they deserve to get some of the benefits of that," Lueken told the Star Tribune earlier this week. "You can't always take. You also have to give back."

    "He's rockin' awesome," said employee Maria Svare, 41, who started at Lueken's in 2009 and worked up to front-end manager.

    "He chose to protect his people," she said. "Being owners will make us care more about our work. It gives you something to call your own and gives

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  • On Saturday afternoon, Joseph "Jo Jo" McCray, 6, went missing while on a hunting excursion with his family in a wooded area in Sunderland, Vermont.

    More than 120 first responders and volunteers joined the search for the young boy, who was found early the next morning more than a mile from where he was last spotted.

    "The boy did talk when we found him. He was very cold, his feet were wet, and he had a good amount of clothing on — camouflage overalls, long johns, heavy wool coat and a hat. He was dressed for the elements," Arlington Fire Chief James Paustian told the Times Argus.

    Joseph disappeared after he was told to spread out in the woods as part of a family deer drive, WCAX reported. He failed to reunite with his dad and siblings at their rendezvous point. After retracing their steps, the frantic family reported the boy missing.

    Joseph was found near the Glastenbury Mountain summit, quite the trek for a youngster of that size, Paustian said:

    "The terrain is vertical with a lot of

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  • Goodbye, Cyber Monday — hello, Giving Tuesday

    Move over, Cyber Monday. Today is Giving Tuesday, the official jumpstart to the holiday giving season.

    "It's a simple idea. Find a way for your family, your community, your company or your organization to join in acts of giving. Tell everyone you can about what you are doing and why it matters. Join a national celebration of our great tradition of generosity," promotes GivingTuesday.org.

    Instead of encouraging excitement for buying, supporters of the first-ever Giving Tuesday want to see citizens get excited about charitable donations. And while it follows the American Thanksgiving-generated Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday aims to become a worldwide phenomenon.

    "We wanted to create a day that was good for the soul," Beverly Greenfield, a spokesperson for the 92 St Y, a non-profit cultural and community group in New York, which helped create the project, told the Guardian.

    "We are encouraging people to give something," she continued. "We are trying to create a community

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  • $300k in gold dust found during California home renovation

    Workers installing an expensive heating and air system in a old Sacramento, California, home discovered a secret gold dust stash hidden beneath the floor grill.

    The honest men turned in their discovery to the surprised homeowners.

    Experts estimate that the gold dust, stored in 12 baby food jars, is worth $300,000.

    The pricey HVAC installation cost around $6,500.

    "I still can't believe it today," Steve Ottley of Clark & Rush, the HVAC installation company, told CBS Sacramento. "It's unreal. We kind of just looked at each other and said 'wow.'"

    The homeowners, who requested anonymity in the press, don't know the origin of the gold dust, but are " handling their new gold just fine," CBS reports.

    "Every time we find this type of thing, we are always trustworthy and upfront," said Mark Thyne of Clark & Rush, adding that while he can guarantee integrity and great customer service, he can't guarantee finding buried treasure with each installation.

    The company did, however, find around $25,000

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