A Marine dad had a tea party with his daughter, and people are loving it.

By any measure, Keven Porter is a good dad.

He makes a living as a U.S. Marine Corps drill instructor, where he trains new enlistees in the art of serving our country. When he's not scaring the daylights out of fresh recruits, he's a loving husband to wife Lizette and father to 4-year-old daughter Ashley.

Unfortunately, with such a demanding job, Porter doesn't get quite as much time to just be a dad as he'd like. So Lizette took matters into her own hands and set up a special daddy-daughter photo shoot for the two of them that would give them a chance to make some memories together.


Lizette and Ashley had a sneaky plan, though. This was no ordinary father-daughter photo shoot.

Porter arrived dressed in his uniform, but he quickly realized he wasn't the only one who had dressed for the occasion.

When he showed up at the shoot in Oceanside, California, he found Ashley in full princess attire, sitting at a small table set for royal tea.

All photos by Kyndal Rose Photography, used with permission.

That's right. This Marine had been ambushed with a fairy-tale tea party.

He never saw it coming. But hey, duty calls, right?

Porter was caught a little off-guard and hesitant at first, but Ashley's excitement was plenty to persuade him to go for it.

While we think of military men as gruff, tough, and fearless warriors, Lizette told ABC News she hoped the photo shoot would show the world that "a lot of them have a completely different side to them."

The photos of Porter joining Ashley's tea party with love and enthusiasm have made waves around the internet.

The photos are incredibly moving and touching; the contrast between soldier and princess, father and daughter, and the powerful bond they share sparked thousands to share the series of photos that photographer Kyndal Rose shared on Facebook.

Fatherhood can be a great equalizer that tears down outdated ideas of what masculinity should be.

There's no measure of a "real man" that matters more than how he treats the people he loves — not his physical prowess, and not how fast he can assemble a rifle.

Kudos to Keven Porter for proudly sharing his softer side, and for his service to our country. The world could use more fathers like him.

Simon & Garfunkel's song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" has been covered by more than 50 different musical artists, from Aretha Franklin to Elvis Presley to Willie Nelson. It's a timeless classic that taps into the universal struggle of feeling down and the comfort of having someone to lift us up. It's beloved for its soothing melody and cathartic lyrics, and after a year of pandemic challenges, it's perhaps more poignant now than ever.

A few years a go, American singer-songwriter Yebba Smith shared a solo a capella version of a part of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," in which she just casually sits and sings it on a bed. It's an impressive rendition on its own, highlighting Yebba's soulful, effortless voice.

But British singer Jacob Collier recently added his own layered harmony tracks to it, taking the performance to a whole other level.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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