GREENSBORO, N.C. — As 2018 comes to a close, we’re looking back at moments that remind us how human we really are.
From a tornado, to two hurricanes, a snow storm and everything in between, the Triad has once again shown the world how hard times bring out the best in people, especially our community.
Here are 10 memorable moments from 2018
- Kids Who Were Stranded on Bus Bring Deputy to Tears with How They Thank Him
During a regular patrol near Archdale, sergeant Wayne Faircloth came across an activity bus broken down on the side of the highway that was headed to a Special Olympics event at a local YMCA. While waiting on another bus, the students said they were cold, so Faircloth handed them some blankets he keeps in his vehicle. Faircloth thought the kids could use another pick-me-up after the incident, so he gave them some stuffed animals he kept in his vehicle. A few days later, the deputy received thank you cards from the students for comforting them with a blankets and stuffed animals to hold in that moment of confusion, which touched him greatly.
- 9-Year-Old Opens ‘Cam’s Coffee Creations’ to Help Kids with Special Needs
9-year-old Cam Myers' biggest passion is helping people. His new coffee shop, Cam's Coffee Creations is helping kids with special needs, just like him, realize that anything is possible. On its first day, Cam’s Coffee Creations served 100 customers. This small business isn’t only making a difference in Cam’s life. The shop’s employees have special needs just like Cam making it a sustainable business for an underrepresented community.
- Vietnam Veteran Is First NICU 'Manny' In the Cone Health NICU Nannies Program
Ron Simpson, a Vietnam Veteran and grandfather of five, is the first man in the hospital's NICU Nannies Program. The NICU Nannies Program trains volunteers to cuddle and hold the newborns while parents aren’t around. Simpson says he enjoys talking to the newborns, humming to them, praying over them. According to Simpson, those who know him agree he suffers from PTSD, and that the comfort he provides to the NICU babies also comforts him.
- Greensboro Community Rallied to Feed Families Impacted by April Tornado
Across the city, volunteers big and small rolled up their sleeves to make sure they were doing their part to help those in need. At New Light Missionary Baptist Church, church members and other allies joined forces to deliver meals to affected areas in Greensboro. Guilford County School Nutrition Services provided over 1,500 meals for school-aged children and were distributed at locations across the county.
- Triad Mother Who Lost Baby Makes Gifts for Mothers in the NICU
The Gray Family said good-bye to their son Sadler's earthly body, but his legacy lives on through "Smiles for Sadler," an initiative Lindsay, his mother, began in his honor. For Mother’s Day, she made care packages to gift to mothers with children in the NICU. The care packages include notepads, pens, lip balm, snacks, hair ties, hand sanitizer, and other small personal products she remembers came in handy during her stay.
- Winston-Salem/Forsyth County First Responders Honored with Free Professional Portraits
Professional photographers from the University Photographers’ Association of America (UPAA) welcomed local paramedics, firefighters, police and emergency personnel to Wake Forest’s campus as dozens of them volunteered their talents to take free portraits of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County first responders and their families. Among the subjects were the grandkids of Winston-Salem Police Sergeant Mickey Hutchens, who died in the line of duty in 2009. “This is an opportunity for Wake Forest and UPAA photographers to recognize and thank emergency personnel who are first to arrive on the scene and assist victims in the most challenging and stressful of situations,” said Wake Forest University Photographer, Ken Bennett, who is the Vice-President of the UPAA and organized this year’s free portraits community service event.
- 3rd-Grader Turns Classmate's No Lunch Money Day into a Lesson of Giving
8-year-old Bella Marshall remembered a day a classmate didn’t have enough money for lunch at school and says he felt embarrassed because all the kids were teasing. It stuck with her, and she wanted to do something so other kids at her school didn’t have to go through the same thing. With her mom’s help, she started Bella’s Blessings, a social media fundraiser to help kids who may not be able to afford lunch and field trips through a GoFundMe page with a $500 goal. Bella and her supporters raised over $1,000 an account for the cafeteria. Anytime a cashier notices a child may not be able to pay, they can discreetly swipe and cover their meal.
- Hospice Aide Crochets Patriotic Blankets for Veteran Patients
Dawn Wilson has been a dedicated Hospice aide at Hospice and Palliative Care of Greensboro for over 10 years. When she’s not working at hospice, she dedicates her time and talents to giving back to some very special patients: veterans. Wilson crochets blankets with patriotic colors and patterns for veteran patients to bring them comfort and recognition during a difficult time, at the end of life. This year, Wilson's blankets have gone to 17 different veteran patients.
- Group of Bystanders Form Human Chain to Save An Elderly Man Submerged in His Truck
76-year-old Mike Konstantopolous was looking for a nearby barber shop when he drove into the flooded Art Attack Tattoo shop parking lot Thursday afternoon. The tattoo shop’s employees pulled together, literally, forming a human chain to save the man after heavy rain from Hurricane Michael in Winston-Salem. According to Konstantopolous' daughter, Michelle, he is thankful for his guardian angels. Without the shop’s manager’s bravery and her coworkers’ help, this story could’ve ended very differently, but their “What would I do?” quickly turned into a “Why wouldn’t you?”
- 7-Year-Old Collects 300+ Items In 12 Days for The Homeless This Christmas
When 7-year-old Dallas Isley, a second-grader at Oak Ridge Elementary, overheard his grandmother talking about The Green Team Helping Hands, Inc, he immediately knew he wanted to get involved. Dallas approached his mom about ways he could bring a little light into homeless people’s lives this holidays season. He decided to start a food, clothing and toiletries drive and had his classroom join in on the cause. Between November 26 and December 7, Dallas collected 317 items to help feed those in need and keep them warm for Christmas.