A truck driver desperate to see his dying mom put out a call for help and was blown away
via Andrew_Writer / Flickr

It has been a whirlwind week for Aaron Wylie, he's been overwhelmed by sadness, desperation, and finally, gratitude. Wylie is a bus driver for Halifax Transit in Nova Scotia.

On Tuesday afternoon he learned his mother has terminal liver disease and just two to four months to live.

He was desperate to go see his mother in Saint John, New Brunswick but knew that he faced a few roadblocks that seemed insurmountable.

Currently, in Canada people are not allowed to travel from Nova Scotia to New Brunswick unless they isolate for 14 days. Wylie had already used up all of his vacation days and couldn't afford any more time off.

However, he learned that there was one way he could get across the border to see his mother. In Canada, truck drives are classified as essential workers and he happens to have his Class 1 license. All he needed was a trucking job that crossed the border into New Brunswick.

via Kijiji

So he went on Kijiji, an online classified forum, and put some feelers out for jobs that would allow him to drive to New Brunswick. "I know this is a bit of an odd request but I'm looking for a class 1 position. I have Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday off, I work full time at Halifax Transit," he wrote. "I am looking for a route that will run Halifax to Saint John.… I am willing to drive for free!"

"My mother was diagnosed with terminal liver failure and was given two months to live today, May 11, and I have no way to cross NS border," he added, signing off with his phone and email address.

Wylie didn't expect much of a response. "I didn't really think I'd get much of a reaction," he said. Boy was he wrong.

Almost immediately, Wylie's phone wouldn't stop ringing. Someone on Kijiji put his ad on Facebook where it was shared over 5,000 times.

Countless people offered him jobs that went to New Brunswick. Another offered their liver for a transplant. Others said they'd send money to help the family.

"I was just blown away," Wylie told the CBC while choking up. "These are people I don't even know."

Wylie accepted two of the trucking offers but now has to figure out how to see his mother after crossing the border. New Brunswick has a mandate that all drivers from outside the province must limit their activities to only those that are work-related.

Given the fact that rules are constantly shifting due to a recent decline in COVID-19 cases and the steady increase in vaccinations, Wylie is hopeful he'll be able to see his mother soon.

But his spirits have been uplifted due to the overwhelming number of strangers who stepped up to help him.

"It's been an overwhelming response and an emotional one," Wylie said. "I hope I can get there, but whether I do or not, it's [heartwarming] to know that that support was there."

Photo courtesy of Macy's

Did you know that girls who are encouraged to discover and develop their strengths tend to be more likely to achieve their goals? It's true. The question, however, is how to encourage girls to develop self-confidence and grow up healthy, educated, and independent.

The answer lies in Girls Inc., a national nonprofit serving girls ages 5-18 in more than 350 cities across North America. Since first forming in 1864 to serve girls and young women who were experiencing upheaval in the aftermath of the Civil War, they've been on a mission to inspire girls to kick butt and step into leadership roles — today and in the future.

This is why Macy's has committed to partnering with Girls Inc. and making it easy to support their mission. In a national campaign running throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases to the nearest dollar or donate online to support Girls Inc. and empower girls throughout the country.

Kaylin St. Victor, a senior at Brentwood High School in New York, is one of those girls. She became involved in the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc. when she was in 9th grade, quickly becoming a role model for her peers.

Photo courtesy of Macy's

Within her first year in the organization, she bravely took on speaking opportunities and participated in several summer programs focused on advocacy, leadership, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). "The women that I met each have a story that inspires me to become a better person than I was yesterday," said St. Victor. She credits her time at Girls Inc. with making her stronger and more comfortable in her own skin — confidence that directly translates to high achievement in education and the workforce.

In 2020, Macy's helped raise $1.3 million in support of their STEM and college and career readiness programming for more than 26,000 girls. In fact, according to a recent study, Girls Inc. girls are significantly more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, to be interested in STEM careers, and to perform better on standardized math tests.

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Screenshots via @castrowas95/Twitter

In the Pacific Northwest, orca sightings are a fairly common occurrence. Still, tourists and locals alike marvel when a pod of "sea pandas" swim by, whipping out their phones to capture some of nature's most beautiful and intelligent creatures in their natural habitat.

While orcas aren't a threat to humans, there's a reason they're called "killer whales." To their prey, which includes just about everything that swims except humans, they are terrifying apex predators who hunt in packs and will even coordinate to attack whales several times their own size.

So if you're a human alone on a little platform boat, and a sea lion that a group of orcas was eyeing for lunch jumps onto your boat, you might feel a little wary. Especially when those orcas don't just swim on by, but surround you head-on.

Watch exactly that scenario play out (language warning, if you've got wee ones you don't want f-bombed):

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