High School Junior Takes 93-year-old Grandmother to Prom

They might just be the most precious prom dates ever.

Connor Campbell, a junior at Pinewood Prep in Summerville, South Carolina, took his 93-year-old grandma, Betty Jane Keene, to his school dance.

“It was wonderful. It was really great,” Keene told ABC News of her fabulous evening at Middleton Place Plantation on April 1. “He had told all his friends. Every boy and girl. It was about 100 children at that dance and it was so lovely and they all came up and shook my hand and then I got Connor to dance with me. He’s not a dancer, but I am.”

The Summerville Journal SceneConnor Campbell, a junior from Summerville, South Carolina, took his grandmother, Betty Jane Keene, as his prom date.

Connor was insistent all year that his grandma would be his prom date.

“Connor had asked her last year to go with him this year,” his mom, Jacqueline Campbell, recalled. “He promised her a year ago. He said, ‘April 2017 I’ll take you.’ For the whole year he kept saying it.”

When the time finally came, Keene picked out a lovely long, pale pink gown from her favorite catalog.

“I’ve always shopped at Draper’s and Damon’s and so I had a catalog and I flipped and I saw this pale pink long dress with a light jacket, and I thought I looked good in pink,” said Keene. “I was a blonde in my day and I always wore soft colors. I said to Jackie, ‘I think this will be great but tell Connor to look at it.’ And he screamed, ‘Tell her to get it.’”

The Summerville Journal SceneConnor Campbell, a junior from Summerville, South Carolina, took his grandmother, Betty Jane Keene, as his prom date.

She treated herself to the fancy gown and Connor got matching pale pink duds.

“I had a wrist corsage with pink roses. He had a pink rose boutonniere,” Keene said. “He had a pink tie and vest with his tuxedo. He’s such a handsome boy.”

Keene was over the moon to also get her makeup, nails and hair done for the special occasion.

Jacqueline CampbellConnor Campbell, a junior from Summerville, South Carolina, took his grandmother, Betty Jane Keene, as his prom date.

“My daughter found the best shoes at Belk, with these pretty, pretty stars on the toes,” the proud prom date recalled. “Jackie did my face and made me up. And I had my hair done Saturday and my nails done. I was really dressed up for a 93 year old.”

But her favorite part of the whole evening?

“Dancing with Connor,” she said. “I thought that was great.”

Jacqueline CampbellConnor Campbell, a junior from Summerville, South Carolina, took his grandmother, Betty Jane Keene, as his prom date.

“It just warmed my heart,” said Connor’s mom. “They both had a good time. It wasn’t like anyone’s arm was twisted to go. Both of them had a wonderful time and they both said it was the best thing ever.”

Will Keene be Connor’s date next year too?

“I won’t go next year,” she said with a laugh. “I want him to find a girlfriend.”

“Blankets to spread love” -Abington girls honor mother’s memory by spreading kindness

Abington residents Angela, 18, Christina, 16, and Mia, 7, started Annie’s Kindness Blankets to spread love to others after their mother died.

Anna Burgess The Enterprise – Angela, Christina and Mia Varney spent their Sunday in the hallways of South Shore Hospital, delivering fleece Annie’s Kindness Blankets to the hospital’s youngest patients.The sunny, breezy day would have been their mother Anne Varney’s 38th birthday. Varney, of Abington, died by suicide two years ago.Her three daughters are on a mission now to spread their mother’s kindness to remind others they are not alone, Angela said.“I think this is so much better than doing nothing and just mourning the fact that she’s not here,” Angela said.Anne Varney was described as a loving wife to the girls’ father, Steven, and a wonderful mother and friend with an infectious laugh, but she had struggled with depression for years.When she died, the girls were devastated. As they dealt with their grief, they realized that reaching out with kindness would make their mother proud and help others who might be struggling.“Our mom was honestly like a one-in-a-million person,” Angela, 18, said. “She was the sweetest person ever, and I guess this started because we wanted to show how far niceness can get you.”“We thought of blankets because people can wrap kindness around themselves,” said the girls’ aunt, Barbara Buckley. “What Annie would have actually done would be hug people until they felt better.”For more than a year now, the three girls have led the effort to spread kindness and caring, helped by Buckley, her daughter Aubrianne, and her friend Lisa Palmer.Mia, 7, Christina, 16, and Angela have given out nearly 1,000 blankets to area hospitals, homeless people and anyone who reaches out via their Facebook page. Blankets have been sent to the Ronald McDonald House in Texas, to Portugal and to Australia.Mia said she especially likes giving the blankets to sick children. Asked why her family started the project, Mia said, “so it can make people better.”Into every blanket, their grandmother Maryann Hall sews a message of kindness, reminding the recipients they are loved.Buckley said hundreds of recipients have expressed their gratitude. One woman struggling with depression said receiving the blanket saved her life.“It shows someone you care and you’re supporting them,” Christina said. “Even if it’s just a blanket, it goes a long way.”The girls also made a depression and suicide awareness video in which they remind people they are loved and would be missed if they were gone.“This is our never-ending story,” their message in the video reads. “It is our goal to never make it yours.”Asked if they were happy with how they spent their mom’s birthday, Angela and Christina answered together, “definitely.”“I love doing this,” Angela said. “I wouldn’t want to spend it any other way.”

Humpback whale ‘knew rescuers were trying to help’ when it was saved from fishing nets for a second time

Just a week ago the whale had to be cut free on the Devon shoreline.

And on Saturday it was caught up in whelk pot lines off a fishing vessel, prompting the RNLI to be called in.

Dan Jarvis of British Divers Marine Life Rescue told the BBC: “Fortunately this time it was a much easier operation and with the experience we had from the last time, it was all done and dusted in about an hour.

“The whale was quite exhausted, but they’re very intelligent animals, so I’d like to think it knew we were trying to help and was very cooperative.”

This maths teacher impresses students with most genius April Fools prank ever

Matthew Weathers decided to take the opportunity of April 1 silliness to show of his technical skills to his students.

The prankster wrote on the white board “by mistake” and proceeded to Google a “solution” to his error. A YouTube video featuring Mr Weathers himself pops up and hilarity ensues.

The online professor attempts to use his sleeve, a cat and cleaning fluid to erase the marker – all to no avail.Finally, it’s a Star Wars light sabre that is thrown “threw the screen” to the classroom teacher that saves the day.

“I’ve done this kind of thing several times,” Mr Weathers told independent.ie.”Readers on Reddit have requested that I do a “behind the scenes” video, so I’ll work on that during Easter Vacation and post that in a couple weeks.”

For the April Fools prank, the class is suitably impressed; take a look at the genius here.

Lindsey Stirling: ‘I overcame anorexia to become a YouTube sensation’

I was always a carefree child, but when I moved from a small town in Arizona to university in Utah, I felt lost. Everyone talked about the ‘freshman fifteen’ – the 15lbs students gain in their first year – and I thought, ‘That’s not going to be me.’

So I started counting calories with my housemate. I was fascinated that if I ate a little less, I’d be a little skinnier. I started cutting back to compensate for occasional indulgences. A bagel for breakfast meant skipping lunch; dessert meant smaller meals the next day.

In my mind, I ‘ate carefully’ and lost weight ‘casually’. But gradually, I started restricting like crazy: carbohydrates and meat became a ‘no go’ but vegetables were ‘safe’. So I’d snack on carrots to fill up – but ate so many my skin turned orange from the beta-carotene.

California family’s missing cat ‘BooBoo’ found in Guelph, Ont.

It’s anyone’s guess how BooBoo the cat travelled more than 3,000 kilometres from California to Canada, but its American owner says she can’t wait to be reunited with her brown tabby, who went missing four years ago.

Ashley Aleman, from Watsonville, Calif., said her mother received a voicemail from a Canadian animal shelter two weeks ago, notifying them that BooBoo had been found alive and well in southern Ontario.

The 21-year-old said the outdoor cat went missing in 2013.

“We have a lot of stray cats around the area, so we were like ‘maybe she wandered off with them,”‘ Aleman said. “And then we finally figured out she was not coming back, so we gave up looking after a while because there was nothing really we could do for her.”

Melissa Stolz of the humane society in Guelph, Ont., said BooBoo was brought in as a stray earlier this month. Staff did a routine scan for a microchip, she said, and found one that led to BooBoo’s owners in California.

“She came in in wonderful condition, she’s been very well taken care of and had no problems at all,” Stolz said. “So, clearly there was someone out there who was taking care of her.”

Stolz said she first thought that the cat’s owners had moved to Canada and forgot to update the microchip information, which she said happens all the time.

“After we discovered the owners are still in California, then we started to wonder what could have happened,” Stolz said. “It could have been that maybe she hitched a ride unintentionally, or maybe she got into a transport truck — that has happened before — and she snuck her way across the border.”

The other possibility, she said, is someone could have found BooBoo as a stray in California and lost her in Canada.

The truth about BooBoo’s adventure may never be known, but Aleman said she’s excited to get her cat back this week.

Aleman’s mother will be flying to Buffalo, N.Y., on Friday to meet with a Canadian animal protection officer who will drive the cat to the border.

When BooBoo is back, Aleman said her family will work to get the cat reacquainted with its old home. Since BooBoo went missing, the family has adopted another cat and they are hoping they will get along.

But one thing is for sure, Aleman said.

“She’ll definitely be an indoor cat this time.”

[Update] Over 2,000 cards delivered to Olivia Enderle for her birthday

Since we aired the story about Olivia Enderle, the little girl who was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, the response to help grant her birthday wish has been spread across the nation. She originally had 25 birthday cards, but her goal was 100 cards. Now Olivia has over 2,000 cards.

Believe it or not, more cards are still coming from across the globe like Italy and Japan. Olivia’s mother, Emily Enderle, said she’s just happy the world recognizes how special Olivia is the way she does.

“The UPS guy just had a big smile on his face and he’s just like, “I’m happy I could visit,” she said. Everyone has been happy to be apart of her birthday wish.

“The FedEx guy saw the news story and said he felt special to be the one to deliver her packages,”she added.

Emily said this just shows there are still good people out there.

Restaurant owner fed emergency workers for free during Westminster attack

A Muslim-born restaurateur has told how he fed hundreds of emergency service workers for free in the aftermath of Wednesday’s terror attack.

When police ordered Ibrahim Dogus to evacuate and close his three restaurants in the wake of the incident, he decided to keep Troia, on Belvedere Road yards from Westminster Bridge, open so police officers had a place to eat and keep warm.

“I went to one of the officers and said ‘I can shut all the businesses, but I want you guys and all the emergency staff to use this place for food, drinks, and for warmth for free’,” he told The Independent.

“All these great people need our support. Some of them tried to give us money—one said, ‘I’m a police officer, you have to take my money.’ We said, ‘We’re not going to take any money from you.”

Mr Dogus, the founder of the British Kebab Awards, kept the restaurant open until 11.30pm “until the last officer was fed”. He estimates he fed between 300 and 500 emergency workers from the police, London Ambulance Service, and London Fire Brigade.

“We wanted to play our role in terms of supporting the emergency crew. This was happening right at our doorstep. If you walk two seconds on my doorstep I would be on the bridge. I use the bridge to take my kids to school, not on that day, but I live next to the area, I work next to the area.”

All three of Mr Dogus’ Kurdish restaurants—Troia, Cucina and Westminster Kitchen—were inside an exclusion zone cordoned off by police in the aftermath of Wednesday’s attack.

“It could have been any of us killed by these lunatics,” he said. “It’s so terrible, but London has pulled together very quickly. The first day after business was quiet but now it’s back to normal.”

Mr Dogus said he was born into a Muslim family but does not currently practise any religion.

A Muslim-led fund to support victims and victims’ families of the terror attack in Westminster, in which five people were killed including the attacker and 50 were injured, has raised more than £25,000 in a few days.

Nine-year-old boy opens lemonade stand to pay for grandfather’s cancer care

A nine-year-old boy opened a lemonade stand outside his home to raise money for his grandfather’s cancer care bills and ended making more than $5,000 (£4,000) in the process.

Angel Reyes has been pouring out the juice in front of his home in Las Cruces, New Mexico to raise funds for his grandfather Richard Sanchez, who suffers from third stage colon and rectal cancer.

After having a nine-inch tumour removed, he will likely need chemotherapy.

The schoolboy has raised more than $5,025 (£4,027) via his gofundme.com page after his mother and uncle helped set up the makeshift stall.

“He just wants to help his grandpa in any way that he can, and for a nine-year-old, this is the best idea he could think of and I’m so proud of him for doing it,” his mother Chasity Sanchez said.

Zane Vila, another nine-year-old boy, handed over a $1,000 (£801) cheque this afternoon which was raised by Cancer Aid Resource & Education Inc.

The crowds were so big that police had to show up to give Angel a special permit for the stand, news channel Fox 29 reported.

Many of the visitors did not want lemonade but just wanted to donate.

Approximately 6 million men in the US suffer from colon and rectum cancer.

Security guard is still on duty hours before he graduates, cum laude, at Saint Theresa’s College in Cebu

It is just hours before he graduates, and with honors at that, but Erwin Valmoria Macua. 38, is still on duty – working the night shift – as a security guard at the Catholic-run St. Theresa’s College (STC) in Cebu City. Macua, who is assigned at the entrance gate of STC, could not keep down his excitement that finally his dream to finish college will happen today, Saturday. “Dili ko katuo nga makaabot ko ani nga point. Nag lutaw pako karon,” he told Cebu Daily News. (I could not believe that I would reach this point. I am stlll on cloud nine.) Seventeen years after serving the school as one of its security guards, the 38-year old father of three will walk up the stage at 3 p.m. today at the STC Theatre to receive a diploma for a baccalaureate degree in Elementary Education (BeEd), cum laude. Despite working a shift of from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., Macua maintained a full load – attending classes from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. – and was a consistent Dean’s Lister since his first year college in 2013. And just like how he had not been skipping a day’s work since he started college, today is no difference. He will remain on duty until 7 a.m. today. His reason is simple: He does not want a salary deduction. “It’s no work, no pay. My salary here has been helping support not just my studies but as well as my family,” he added. Giving himself the monicker ‘For the love of family,’ Macua, a native of Trinidad, Bohol, is not the only one in school. His eldest son, 17, is in college, taking up Bachelor of Science in Accountancy at the University of Cebu, as a Cebu City scholar; the second, John Clifford, 16, is Grade 10 student at the Ramon Duterte Memorial National High School in Cebu City; and the youngest, a girl, Cherise May, is only ten-months-old. His wife, Irenea, runs a sari-sari store at their home in Barangay Kalunasan, Cebu City to help augment the family income. Before he was married, Macua was a college drop out; a civil engineering student at the Divine Word College of Tagbiliran (now called as Holy Name University). He dropped out of college in 1997 after only a semester since his farmer-parents, who tilled a field in Trinidad, Bohol, could no longer afford to send him to school. Macua, the eldest of six children, decided to leave for Cebu City to find a job. He was hired as a security guard in STC in 2000. It was his uncle, also a security guard, who helped him get the needed three-week training that allowed him to land the STC job. He had always dreamed of finishing college even after he got married shortly after he got a job and started raising a family. But it was not until 2013, when STC, which used to be an all girls school, began accepting male college students that he had an opportunity to get a degree. Macua decided to take up BeEd since he wants to inspire the young people to study and change their lives. In particular, he wants to inspire the youth to give back to their parents who work hard to provide them education. “I want to inspire them; that they need to give back to their parents. That will be the best reward to them,” he added. It was also a blessing when he was informed by the school’s management that he could avail of the 50 percent tuition discount. “Who could refuse such offer? This is a dream come true for me to get a degree,” he said. With a tuition that ranged from P20,000 to P36,000 per semester, the 50 percent discount was heaven sent. He said his burden was further lessened when son Jean Vincent got a scholarship from the Cebu city government. Family pride Macua said while he had very little time to sleep, he managed to fulfill both his work and school duties. It was all about time management, he stressed. But he is just as thankful to his classmates for being good to him; helping him get through study periods. Most of all he said, he was most grateful to his family, his wife in particular, for the understanding and support. He said there were many instances when he could not go home and see his family since he had projects and school works to be done in between his duty hours. But he tried his best to finish all his school projects at school since he wanted to spend his rest day, Sunday, with his family. “I am very happy that my family, my wife is very understanding,” he added. He recalled that there were many instances when he had to bring home his school projects but his wife and kids, instead of resenting him, turned it into a family bonding time by helping him finish his homework. He especially recalled the time when he had to do his bulletin board projects and decorations: “My wife and son helped me a lot,” he added. Today, as he receives a recognition for his years of hard work, it will not only be his wife and children who will be there to share this happy moment. Macua said his mother and five siblings will all be coming from Bohol to attend his graduation rites at 3 p.m. today.