When the coronavirus pandemic first truly hit the United States, nobody knew how things would shake out. Flash forward nearly an entire year later and we still aren’t sure exactly what the future may hold. With that being said, the past eight months haven’t been wasted entirely. Some people like Eduard Seitan, a restaurateur from Chicago, used their pandemic downtime to help those most at risk and vulnerable, including sick and injured animals. Before we dive into that aspect of the story, let’s first introduce you to Eduard Seitan.
Seitan would find his way to the United States at a young age after having immigrated from Romania when he was only 19-years-old. Fresh-faced and completely at a loss concerning the English language, Eduard knew that he was facing an uphill challenge in his new country. In fact, Eduard couldn’t speak a single word of English. Despite his linguistic limitations, Eduard knew that he could turn his fortune around by working hard.
After working for a few months at a construction job site, Eduard would find his way to a popular Italian restaurant named Club Lucky, due to his own Italian background. Eduard would work as a food runner until he was eventually promoted to the position of head server. A few short years later, Eduard would partner with a friend to establish the One Off Hospitality Group, leading to the Michelin-starred Blackbird and more than 10 other spots throughout Chicago.
Now one of the most prominent self-made restaurateurs in Chicago, Eduard Seitan isn’t letting his position hold him back during the pandemic. When life essentially shut down in March, Seitan and his team would quit drawing salaries to preserve as many employees as possible. Still, two restaurants would end up being shut down. Seitan said, “It was so hard for us.” More than 100,000 restaurants throughout Chicago have already closed on a long-term basis at the time of this writing.
As winter approaches, Eduard knows that dining outdoors will be all but impossible. While his businesses continue to fight against the ongoing pandemic, Eduard has taken to the air to continue making an impact of his own. Seitan flies as a member of the Pilots N Paws program, a nonprofit network of volunteers that pilot at-risk dogs and cats to no-kill organizations around the country. Additionally, Pilots N Paws will literally take animals off of the euthanization list to bring them to forever homes throughout the nation.
For his own part, Seitan has helped to save over 40 pets that were to be euthanized at their local Chicago shelter. Seitan has frequently spoken out against animal abuse and how the very description can fill him with rage. As a result, Seitan knew that he wanted to truly give new opportunities to animals so that they could live fulfilling lives in homes brimming with love and affection. Along the way, Seitan points out that the dogs enjoy the ride and ‘do really well’ once the plane gets into the air.
Seitan has long called the air his ‘happy place’ and now he is returning there frequently with the pandemic opening up his schedule. October 14th saw Seitan fly Frank, a German pointer, and Hero, a mixed-breed, to Ohio where they would join a prison-dog program. The animals would be introduced to individuals serving their time, in return, the dogs will be trained and treated to love and affection.
Eduard Seitan has a pair of rescue dogs of his own and he frequently volunteers alongside the team at Chicago Animal Care and Control.
Man Dubbed a Hero After Saving a Baby Elephant With CPR
People who are trained to provide CPR to rescue others expect to be called upon in the odd moment to act. However, Srivate Mana never expected that his knowledge in how to save a life would be critical in saving a baby elephant. Yet, that is exactly what he found himself doing and was filmed in a video that went viral on the Internet shortly after. Savings a baby elephant left on the side of the road, Mana was able to bring the elephant back and it was standing again within 10 minutes.
Animals Can’t Read Road Warning Signs
Like any animal, the baby elephant was simple moving from one part of the area to another looking for food and following its herd. However, unlike the older pachyderms, the young elephant was not yet used to the roads and vehicles that cut through roaming area of Chanthaburi. It had no idea what to make of the noise or the lights the vehicles had to signal they were approaching. And curiosity ultimately ended up being the animal’s weakness. As a result, it had no idea what was hurtling towards the small animal when a motorcycle rider slammed into the creature at speed. The rider was okay, aside from scuffs and being thrown from the motorbike. Unfortunately, the baby elephant took the brunt of the impact and was laid out on the road.
Things Weren’t Looking Very Good
When Mana arrived at the scene traveling the same path as his crew, he could see his coworkers taking care of the downed rider, but nothing was happening for the elephant. In the distance he could also hear the mother and adult elephants calling for the baby creature. Instinctually, Mana knows to jump into action to save a life, and even the elephant parents calling seemed to trigger his training. Trying to guess where the elephant’s heart was, he got close to the creature on the road and started figuring out where to apply CPR. At the same time Mana was crying, feeling a wave of emotion for the junior pachyderm. Amazingly, the elephant began to move. He was in shock but for a good reason.
A Miracle on Four Legs, With a Trunk
After a few seconds of standing the baby elephant began to reorient itself and went right back to the same location where it was originally hit, probably looking for its mother. Amazingly, the baby elephant wasn’t seriously injured, just completely dazed and confused. As the young elephant started calling out for any sign of its herd, the mother and the rest of the elephants came back out of the countryside to fetch it. Mana watched the reunion and smiled.
UPS Driver Gets Dazzling Appreciation From Appreciative Community
From the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, most households have been reliant on UPS drivers to deliver their necessities, especially since many physical stores had closed their doors to the public.
The drivers put themselves and their families at risk to get those essentials delivered to millions of homes across the country and make the quarantine less strenuous for families.
One particular UPS delivery driver caught the attention of residents in Smithtown, Long Island, New York where he has been dropping packages off tirelessly both day and night.
For 25 years, Gregory Watkins Sr. has been working for UPS and he has spent the last thirteen of these years assigned to Long Island.
Didn’t he eventually get bored? Actually, it was the opposite for Watkins, who says he liked his job and the welcoming atmosphere of the community he’s been serving for more than a decade.
Recently, in a bid to help meet the pandemic demands, Watkins took on additional shifts which did not go unnoticed by the residents.
The residents were blown away by the father of four turning up six days every week and we’re moved to show their appreciation.
The fact that the busy driver always wore a smile, and went above and beyond to assist the customers, was the icing on the cake.
The residents huddled and came up with a surprise plan, which turned out to be just that, for the valuable UPS delivery driver.
The clueless driver reacted to a text message for assistance from one of the residents, but came upon a host of people converging on the roadway and vehicles lining the sidewalks.
He was unsure of whether to drive through the crowd, but his desire to fulfill the customer’s wishes outweighed his doubt and he slowly began driving towards the crowd.
What greeted him next made the driver gasp for air as residents began emerging from their vehicles with signs and loud cheers egging him on and showing their appreciation.
The driver questioned if what was going on was really to honor him. The doubts were quickly erased as he heard his name being chanted by the excited residents.
As he continued driving down the road, he saw the many signs with positive messages showing appreciation for his remarkable service.
Meanwhile a resident captured the entire event on camera, taking comments from multiple residents who openly thanked the driver.
The residents expressed that they know his family, which drove home the fact that they knew he was making a huge sacrifice since he has four children at home.
The dazzled driver regained his composure and decided to emerge from the vehicle where he was greeted with a barrage of gifts.
He explained to the grateful residents that it has been sheer enjoyment delivering to their community and being of assistance in whatever way possible.
He said watching how everyone evolved, including kids becoming adults or obtaining their drivers license was a part of the pleasure.
As Watkin thanked the residents and expressed what he observed over the last 13 years, he informed them that his tenure would end in two years.
There was a unanimous groan in response to the beloved driver’s statement, but that did not put a damper on the next few minutes as they continued to show their appreciation.
Overall, Watkins says he felt love and care exuded from the residents who even penned their thoughts.
He has been humbled by the gesture and plans to continue serving the community of Smithstown faithfully.
Many people do good but it doesn’t always come back the way they give it. In fact it comes back when they least expect it and that’s exactly what happened to this hardworking father of four.
Five Heroic High School Freshman Heed Call to Action, Save Children From Icy Pond!
When the worst happens in front of our eyes, we all hope that we will have the fortitude to act. For five teenagers from New Jersey, a call to action manifested before themselves while heading home from an evening at Beacon Hill Country Club. The five kids were all from a local high school and they had been sledding at the local country club in Middletown when they heard a commotion coming from a pond near the bottom of the hill. As it turned out, two children on a sled had been rocketing straight toward the ice-covered surface. What happened next could have ended in tragedy if not for a group of brave kids.
Tyler Armagan, Ryan Day, Kieran Foley, Drew Scalice, and Joseph Dietrich had been hanging out at their favorite sledding spot in town when their lives changed forever. Kieran, a 14-year-old from New Jersey, said that he saw the two children careening down the hill and toward the ice-covered pond. Kieran stated, “They just went so fast right down the hill.”
According to Kieran, the father of the children had been yelling for his kids to jump out of the sled. The problem was that 8-year-old Olivia and 4-year-old R.J. were not in control. In the Olympics, sleds can reach speeds of up to 70mph. While little Olivia and R.J. weren’t going that fast, they were certainly not in control. True tragedy was hovering over the entire moment but the boys leaped into action.
As it turns out, Kieran and his friends were all from the same Boy Scout troop. The kids kept their cool and jumped into action immediately. Kieran and his friends formed a human chain down to the pond where the two children had fallen into the icy water. Knowing that time was of the essence, Kieran waded into the water. Kieran stated, “I knew it wasn’t that deep, the water, so I just picked them up..”
Drew was also shocked by what happened though he was quick to act. Drew told reporters, “All I can remember is seeing the kids come down (the hill).” Drew would go on to describe how Ryan helped calm the kids down after pulling them from the water, asking them questions about Christmas and what presents that they would want. As it turns out, this was a wonderful way to calm the kids down as their parents arrived.
After pulling the children from the freezing water, Kieran and his buddies consoled them as they tried to keep them warm. Soon Richard Heid and Stephanie Irlbeck appeared, the parents quick to thank the heroic children that had stepped up to the plate to save their child. As frostbite can occur within ten minutes in the right frigid temperatures, it isn’t dramatic to say that Kieran and his friends potentially saved two lives.
While 2020 was a constant lesson in how dark and hard the world can be, there are always silver linings to turn to for hope and inspiration. While much of the world was engulfed in chaos relating to politics or COVID, good folks like Kieran and his friends continue to do great things for the people around them. Perhaps we could all learn a little bit more from these heroic kids!
Military Officer Just Wanted To Get Home, When Man Confronted Her On Plane
Packed plane rides tend to be the worst because if you’re not lucky enough to get on early, you get stuck with whatever is left. And that usually means being cramped in a middle seat squished between two others. It might be livable on a short flight, but a long flight can be torture sitting like that. For Jessica’s case, it was obvious to her when boarding that her flight was going to be a miserable experience. Everything was taken, and the only seat left was a middle seat in a cramped can of a ride. However, things got weird before she could even get her bag in the storage and sit down. Instead of sitting down, a man walked up and told her she couldn’t sit in the seat she finally found. The reason why just about knocked her off her feet.
Long Lost Family Comes Together During Christmas Miracle: Sisters Find Father and Each Other after 24 Years!
There are times in life when we see a Hollywood movie and think, “There’s no way that is realistic.” Like in Hollywood, sometimes life can be so strange as to seem unbelievable. This past Christmas saw one family come together after being fractured and lost for more than 24 years. Sisters Lisa McLean (33) and Rebecca Parton (24) would run into each other on social media while simultaneously looking for their lost father. In doing so, the three people would set in motion a family reunion that was 24 years in the making.
Lisa McLean and Rebecca Parton would say that they had far from the conventional family upbringing. Life and all the things that go with it caused their family to fracture while they were young, splitting the sisters apart before they could ever chance the opportunity to get to know one another. Growing up apart, Rebecca and Lisa would both yearn for the father that they had been separated from for more than two decades. This would lead the sisters to each individually begin searching for their father on social media.
Then they found one another.
On the hunt for their father, David Riggs, Lisa and Rebecca would end up crossing wires. The two would form a bond and after verifying that, yes, they were indeed sisters, they would join their search together. After years of hunting for their father, the two sisters would manage to wrangle David in just in time for Christmas. While 2020 was a tough year for everyone basically everywhere, Lisa and Rebecca probably felt like they had finally regained something near and dear to their heart.
The actual discovery occurred by chance on David’s side of the screen. David had been living in Blackpool, England, when he caught wind of Lisa looking for him. The 53-year-old father of two would immediately attempt to reunite with his daughters, traveling to the other side of England to meet them for the first time in twenty-plus years. Lisa said of the reunion, “It was just lovely, there’s a lot of catching up to do!”
Lisa and Rebecca would become fast friends with Lisa asking Rebecca to be her bridesmaid. The gesture was touching to Rebecca who was more than happy to be apart of the festivities. In doing so, Rebecca and Lisa got to introduce the five nieces and nephews that are shared between them to their father. David was able to verify that he was their father through old family photographs and various childhood mementos.
Now set to spend their first holidays together in decades, David and his daughters are looking forward to making up for the lost time. Lisa said of the whole event, “The only way I can describe it… but I suppose it’s a Christmas miracle!”
Do you believe in Holiday miracles? Who knows, one might be closer around the corner than you might think!
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