October’s Most Inspiring News Stories

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Source: Vitalant - Illinois via Facebook

21. Bloody good donor
> Date: October
> Location: Chicago, Illinois

More than two decades ago, Richard Packman first donated blood, and he hasn’t stopped since. Packman, 74, has donated blood 500 times over that two-decade span. Packman said a phlebotomist — the person who draws the blood — told him that he had big veins and could be a candidate to be a platelets donor. Packman obliged. For platelets donors, the platelets are removed from the blood by a machine and the blood is then returned to the body. “I really enjoy being a platelets donor because you really know you’re saving lives,” Packman told the Chicago Tribune.


22. Helping get drugs to patients
> Date: Oct. 17
> Location: Memphis, Tennessee

It took three years, but Tennessee pharmacist Phil Baker was finally able to change a Tennessee pharmacy law to allow persons to donate unused prescriptions. The last obstacle was surmounted in early October, after Baker received final approval from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Baker is the founder of the Good Shepherd Pharmacy, which donates medicine to those who cannot afford it. Members in the program pay $40 a month and receive their medications at cost or no charge.

Source: Photo by Alex M. via Yelp

23. Long-distance pizza delivery
> Date: Oct. 17
> Location: Battle Creek, Michigan

Steve’s Pizza in Battle Creek, Michigan, doesn’t normally make deliveries, but the pizzeria made an exception. Julie and Rich Morgan lived in the Michigan city for several years and frequented Steve’s Pizza before moving to Indianapolis. The couple had planned to celebrate Julie’s birthday at the pizzeria. However, Rich Morgan was hospitalized because of salivary gland cancer and the Morgans could not make the trip. So Steve’s Pizza delivered two pizzas — pepperoni and pepperoni and mushroom — to them in Indianapolis, 3.5 hours, one way, away.


24. Teen invents AI treatment for cancer
> Date: Oct. 17
> Location: Oregon

When Rishab Jain found out how lethal pancreatic cancer was, he got to work. The 13-year-old from Oregon won the Young Scientist Challenge for developing an algorithm that uses artificial intelligence to track the pancreas. The pancreas can be hard to find during radiation treatment as it can be hidden behind other organs. Because of this, radiation can accidentally touch healthy cells. Jain’s invention improves the accuracy of tracking the pancreas and the effectiveness of the radiation treatment.

Source: Stowe Reporter / YouTube

25. Political foes make music together
> Date: Oct. 21
> Location: Lamoille County, Vermont

As opposing candidates for a state legislative seat in rural Lamoille County in Vermont, Republican Zac Mayo and Democrat Lucy Rogers have little in common. But what they share is a love of music, and during a campaign marked by vitriol and divisiveness across the country, the political foes put aside their differences and performed the song “Society” as a duet at a local library. Mayo played guitar, and Rodgers played the cello. Music, and politics, do make strange bedfellows.