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He Died Too Young. So All His Friends Got Together To Make Sure Future Generations Of Kids Don't.

Back in May 2013, my life changed forever. A fan wrote to let me know that a teenage musician named Zach Sobiech, who I had written about earlier in the year, had just passed away from a rare cancer. Zach had written a song called "Clouds" about coming to terms with his imminent death. Cancer is personal to me, you see, as I've lost many people, including my father, to it. My mom has hers under control. My son will inevitably have to do something to make sure he doesn't get it. It hit too close to home.The day Zach passed, I went online to see if I could find any more videos about him to honor his memory, and I discovered an amazing short documentary about his brief but beautiful life. I spent a whole day crying, having flashbacks to my father's passing, and made sure it could reach as many people as possible. It was the biggest hit we ever had. 20 million people have seen it. People emailed me from all over the globe to talk about how his story affected their lives. Parents tweeted me about their lost children. Upworthy readers helped raise $450,000 for the Children's Cancer Fund. "Clouds" became the first song by an independent artist to reach the top of the iTunes music charts. And I got to know a wonderful team of people who actually knew and loved him. I'm sad I never got the opportunity to meet him. But 5,000 people who did know him got together to create a giant choir in the middle of the Mall of America. Then they sang his song, which debuted a year ago. The couple in the middle are his wonderful and supportive and brave parents. And I, once again, have become a weepy mess.

Here's the thing about rare cancers like osteosarcoma, which Zach died from. Because it's so rare, research studies often are chronically underfunded and receive much less in donations. The Children's Cancer Research Fund, which you should totally Like on Facebook, needs every opportunity it can get to really crack this disease. Is there any way you could do me a favor and donate to their research fund in Zach's name? It's totally up to you, but I'd owe you a billion.

And maybe you could share this? Then I'd owe you a trillion.


BONUS: You can also buy this song on iTunes! The song is available world wide and Rock the Cause Records is donating 100% of the net to Zach's Osteocarcoma Fund.

UPDATE: You guys are amazing. We've raised over $5,000 already. If you want to contribute still, click here.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

This article originally appeared on 08.21.18


Addie Rodriguez was supposed to take the field with her dad during a high school football game, where he, along with other dads, would lift her onto his shoulders for a routine. But Addie's dad was halfway across the country, unable to make the event.

Her father is Abel Rodriguez, a veteran airman who, after tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, was training at Travis Air Force Base in California, 1,700 miles from his family in San Antonio at the time.

"Mom missed the memo it was parent day, and the reason her mom missed the memo was her dad left Wednesday," said Alexis Perry-Rodriguez, Addie's mom. She continued, "It was really heartbreaking to see your daughter standing out there being the only one without their father, knowing why he's away. It's not just an absentee parent. He's serving our country."

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Pop Culture

She bought the perfect wedding dress that went viral on TikTok. It was only $3.75

Lynch is part of a growing line of newlyweds going against the regular wedding tradition of spending loads of money.

Making a priceless memory

Upon first glance, one might think that Jillian Lynch wore a traditional (read: expensive) dress to her wedding. After all, it did look glamorous on her. But this 32-year-old bride has a secret superpower: thrifting.

Lynch posted her bargain hunt on TikTok, sharing that she had been perusing thrift shops in Ohio for four days in a row, with the actual ceremony being only a month away. Lynch then displays an elegant ivory-colored Camila Coelho dress. Fitting perfectly, still brand new and with the tags on it, no less.

You can find that exact same dress on Revolve for $220. Lynch bought it for only $3.75.
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