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He re-learned to dance after 17 years, but his daughter learned the real lesson.

If you have a chance to do what you love ... do it. No matter what it looks like to others.

He re-learned to dance after 17 years, but his daughter learned the real lesson.

He had always loved dancing.

After he broke his neck in a car wreck, Paul Martin lived his life fully with those he loved ... except for doing one thing he loved: He no longer danced.

He knew he could dance again, but he didn't want others to see him. He thought he'd look silly.


As his daughter, Brittany Déjean, said, "Dancing was one of the first things on his mind after his injury — he loved it, but it was too painful to think of doing it in a wheelchair. Unfortunately for me, that meant dancing with my dad became nothing but a memory."

All images via AbleThrive/YouTube.

But Brittany was getting married, and she wanted her dad to do the father-daughter dance like she always imagined.

So she set out to find info, resources, and help. She rallied a proverbial village around her dad. She found a dance instructor for them, and her dad agreed to try. With the resources and help ... guess what?

After almost 17 years, Paul finally danced again.

And he didn't stop there.

After completing the first choreographed dance with his daughter, he got back on the floor when he heard his favorite song.

"That one dance broke through all the walls he had built up," Brittany said. "He was transformed — he danced all night, he danced at another wedding two weeks later, and he has even taken dance lessons with my stepmom since."

Paul found the strength to fight for his passion. But his daughter, Brittany, may have learned an even bigger lesson.

It's hard for everyone to ask for help, or to even know where to look for it. But it's especially hard for folks living with disabilities. The kind of help that these folks need is just a little different, whether they're trying to learn a new skill, get a new job, nurture a relationship, or start dancing again.

In helping her father get ready for her wedding, Brittany saw firsthand just how challenging this could be.

So, inspired by her father's journey, she started AbleThrive, an online community that helps folks with disabilities get the help they need to reach their goals.

Though her own wedding day has come and gone, Brittany now dedicates her to life to giving people like her father one more place to turn for help.

Because no one can do it all alone.

Kudos to Brittany for empowering more folks to live fully.

Now watch Paul and Brittany's amazing father-daughter dance!

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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