Sunday, January 19, 2014

Just When You Thought You Heard It All News (1-25-2014)

This story is proof that God puts some people in our lives for a season and others for a reason.

Six years ago, Jonny Benjamin almost jumped off the Waterloo Bridge in London.

The then-20-year-old had just been diagnosed with socio schizophrenic disorder. Benjamin wrote that he couldn't come to terms with the diagnosis, so he decided to end his life.

But before he jumped a passerby approached him, according to Rethink Mental Illness, an organization that provides support to people with mental illnesses and for which Benjamin is now an ambassador.

"The man was saying to me." "Please don't do this mate." Benjamin  told BBC Radio 4. "'You can get through it. You can get better. Let's go for a coffee and talk it over.'"

The distraught 20-year-old climbed back over the bridge's railing, where authorities were waiting to take him to a local hospital.

Now, Benjamin, who's since learned how to manage his mental illness, is on a mission to find the good Samaritan he calls "Mike" -- he can't remember if that's his name. Benjamin has started a #findMike social media campaign with Rethink Mental Illness, so he can thank the man who saw a stranger in need and acted.

"He was the first person to give me hope," Benjamin states in the video above. "His words actually prompted my recovery."

Benjamin told the BBC that he also wants to get people talking about suicide, an issue he thinks society tends to ignore.

"Hopefully it will promote a message of hope and recovery," he told the station, "that you can overcome any sort of adversities in life."

This next story is amazing to say the least.

Arno Michaelis once a devoted member of the Neo-Nazi Movement he participated in white supremacist rallies, was a fervent supporter of what he called a Racial Holy War, and was the lead singer in a hate metal band called Centurion. Michaelis says that "single parenthood, love for my daughter, and the forgiveness shown by people I once hated," changed him and guided him toward a life of tolerance, acceptance and peace.

Michaelis' story was featured in recent article which chronicled inspirational stories of people overcoming differences in sexuality, religion, race and nationality to do the right thing.

Michaelis was kind of enough to comment on the piece personally, where he revealed that he was actually inspired by another story in the article, about Keshia Thomas, a black teenager who during a 1996 KKK rally saved the life of a white supremacist in danger of being killed by a mob of counter-demonstrators.

?????? He's definitely more of a humanitarian than me.

"It's such an honor to be included among these amazing examples of humanity. Each is an inspiration, but I'm especially moved by Keshia's amazing exhibit of courage. I was on the white supremacist side of an Ann Arbor rally in 1988, and the hate the protesters reflected and amplified back at us was instrumental in justifying the white supremacist dogma that I ran with for the next 7 years. Aggression is fuel to neo-nazis. Keshia struck the most devastating blow to hate possible and I strive to follow her lead."

Keshia and Arno's stories prove that a culture of tolerance can have a powerful domino effect. It just takes one person with the courage to stand up for what is right, and then others are inspired to follow their example.

This is without a doubt the most bizarre story that I have ever heard.

A Wisconsin man who became lodged in the windshield of a car that struck him said he turned to the driver and said, "Hello, I'm the guy you hit on the 

Wow, this guy had nerves of steel. I would have been calling for Jesus so loud that the whole world would have heard me.

The driver did not respond, but continued on, running a stop sign and hitting another vehicle before he arrived home, the cyclist, Steven Gove, told the local media.

The man finally noticed Gove when he stopped the car outside his home.

"He looked at me and said 'Who are you? What are you doing in the car?'" Gove said. "He started freaking out: 'I'm going to jail, I'm going to jail.'"

Hmmm, I'd say so.

The man then locked the car doors and went into his home. Gove, whose body had gone most of the way through the windshield, then pulled his knees and feet into the car.

"I righted myself and got out," he said. "I unlocked the passenger's side door and started walking down the street."

A witness had called police, who found Gove as he was walking and took him to a hospital. Doctors removed glass from Gove's eyes and treated him for other cuts to the head and leg.

The driver, a 20-year-old Manitowoc man, was found at the home and treated at a hospital for a serious cut to the hand. He hadn't been formally charged as of Tuesday morning, but he was facing several preliminary charges, including suspicion of drunken driving, suspicion of hit-and-run causing injury and suspicion of failing to render aid.

Gove, a 56-year-old newspaper carrier, was shocked that the driver didn't see him on his three-wheeled delivery bike.

Isn't a three-wheeled bike called a tricycle?

"I was wearing my blue overcoat with my neon reflective vest," said Gove. "I had my front and rear flashers on. I have no idea why he didn't see me."


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