Man who kidnapped 11-yr-old girl chased down by heroic citizens who spotted her in the backseat

Most of us have few opportunities in our lives to become real-life heroes, but that's exactly what happened to Amanda Disley when she discovered a kidnapped girl in the backseat of a car.

Massachusetts State Police had issued an Amber Alert on January 15, informing citizens that 11-year-old Charlotte Moccia had reportedly been forced into a car shortly after getting off the school bus in the town of Springfield. "Preliminary investigation suggests that a white or Hispanic male was walking behind CHARLOTTE and forced her into the back of an older model (believed to be 2001-2005), dark blue or black Honda, possibly a Civic, with an unknown plate," the alert stated. "The vehicle has distinctive aftermarket rims and a moonroof."


According to TB Daily News, Amber Disley was driving around Springfield when she noticed someone being pushed down in the backseat of a Honda Civic and thought it looked suspicious. She and her husband weren't sure if it was the car described in the Amber Alert, but they had a "gut feeling" based on the rims and "the funny movements in the car." They called the police and started filming themselves following the car. Disley stayed on the phone with the dispatch describing what was happening and where they were.

The car appeared to go behind a building, but then came back around beside Disley's car. At one point, the Civic was reportedly traveling 100mph through the city, blasting through a red light, while Disley and her husband tried to stay behind and keep their eyes on the car.

While dangerous and certainly not recommended to follow a speeding car through red lights, the heroic actions of this couple paid off. State Troopers knew where to look for the car and were able to stop the driver on the Massachusetts Turnpike. Police report that Charlotte Moccia was recovered safely with no apparent physical injuries. The kidnapper, 24-year-old Miguel Rodriguez of Springfield, was arrested and taken into custody.

Family members of the accused told MassLive that Rodriguez has schizophrenia and has often exhibited bizarre behavior. According to police, Rodriguez had threatened to stab Moccia if she screamed or tried to get out of the car, but in a brief court appearance, he pleaded not guilty to aggravated kidnapping, intimidation of a witness, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

Amber Alerts may be easy to ignore, but this story shows how the system can work when citizens are alerted to reported abductions. Who knows what may have happened to Charlotte Moccia if this couple hadn't spotted the kidnapper's car and followed it. Thankfully, we'll never have to find out.

We'd love to end the story there, but the nature of the internet compels us to add this note: Some scammers have set up a GoFundMe claiming to be raising money for Disley, and she is very clear on the fact that she and her husband did not set it up and don't know who did. She posted an emotional video to Facebook explaining that any GoFundMe is not associated with them, and that they hope whoever is collecting money off of this incident will send the money to the girl who was kidnapped.

Unfortunately, with internet notoriety comes inevitable negativity and opportunists. Don't let it get you down, Amanda. You helped save a girl from who-knows-what kind of trauma, and for that you should be proud.

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A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

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Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.

Usually when we share a story of a couple having been married for nearly five decades, it's a sweet story of lasting love. Usually when we share a story of a long-time married couple dying within minutes of each other, it's a touching story of not wanting to part from one another at the end of their lives.

The story of Patricia and Leslie "LD" McWaters dying together might have both of those elements, but it is also tragic because they died of a preventable disease in a pandemic that hasn't been handled well. The Michigan couple, who had been married for 47 years, both died of COVID-19 complications on November 24th. Since they died less than a minute apart, their deaths were recorded with the exact same time—4:23pm.

Patricia, who was 78 at her passing, had made her career as a nurse. LD, who would have turned 76 next month, had been a truck driver. Patricia was "no nonsense" while LD was "fun-loving," and the couple did almost everything together, according to their joint obituary.

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Courtesy of Macy's

Brantley and his snowman

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"Would you like to build a snowman?" If you asked five-year-old Brantley from Texas this question, the answer would be a resounding "Yes!" While it may sound like a simple dream, since Texas doesn't usually see much snow, it seemed like a lofty one for him, even more so because Brantley has a congenital heart disease.

On Dec. 11, 2019, however, the real Macy's Santa and his two elves teamed up with Make-A-Wish to surprise Brantley and his family on his way to Colorado where there was plenty of snow for him to build his very own snowman, fulfilling his wish as part of the Macy's Believe campaign. After a joy-filled plane ride where every passenger got gift bags from Macy's, the family arrived in Breckenridge, Colorado where Santa and his elves helped Brantley build a snowman.

Brantley, Brantley's mom, and Santa marveling at their snowmanAll photos courtesy of Macy's

Brantley, who according to his mom had never actually seen snow, was blown away by the experience.

"Well, I had to build a snowman because snowmen are my favorite," Brantley said in an interview with Summit Daily. "All of it was my favorite part."

This is just one example of the more than 330,000 wishes the nonprofit Make-A-Wish have fulfilled to bring joy to children fighting critical illnesses since its founding 40 years ago. Even though many of the children that Make-A-Wish grants wishes for manage or overcome their illnesses, they often face months, if not years of doctor's visits, hospital stays and uncomfortable treatments. The nonprofit helps these children and their families replace fear with confidence, sadness with joy and anxiety with hope.

It's hardly an outlandish notion — research shows that a wish come true can help increase these children's resiliency and improve their quality of life. Brantley is a prime example.

"This couldn't have come at a better time because we see all the hardships that we went through last year," Brantley's mom Brandi told Summit Daily.

Brantley playing with snowballs

Now more than ever, kids with critical illnesses need hope. Since they're particularly vulnerable to disease, they and their families have had to isolate even more during the pandemic and avoid the people they love most and many of the activities that recharge them. That's why Make-A-Wish is doing everything it can to fulfill wishes in spite of the unprecedented obstacles.

That's where you come in. Macy's has raised over $132 million for Make-A-Wish, and helped grant more than 15,500 wishes since their partnership began in 2003, but they couldn't have done that without the support of everyday people. The crux of that support comes from Macy's Believe Campaign — the longstanding holiday fundraising effort where for every letter to Santa that's written online at Macys.com or dropped off safely at the red Believe mailbox at their stores, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1 million. New this year, National Believe Day will be expanded to National Believe Week and will provide customers the opportunity to double their donations ($2 per letter, up to an additional $1 million) for a full week from Sunday, Nov. 29 through Saturday, Dec. 5.

There are more ways to support Make-A-Wish besides letter-writing too. If you purchase a $4 Believe bracelet, $2 of each bracelet will be donated to Make-A-Wish through Dec. 31. And for families who are all about the holiday PJs, on Giving Tuesday (Dec. 1), 20 percent of the purchase price of select family pajamas will benefit Make-A-Wish.

Elizabeth living out her wish of being a fashion designer

Additionally, this year's campaign features 6-year-old Elizabeth, a Make-A-Wish child diagnosed with leukemia, whose wish to design a dress recently came true. Thanks to the style experts at Macy's Fashion Office and I.N.C. International Concepts, only at Macy's, Elizabeth had the opportunity to design a colorful floral maxi dress. Elizabeth's exclusive design is now available online at Macys.com and in select Macy's stores. In the spirit of giving back this holiday season, 20 percent of the purchase price of Elizabeth's dress (through Dec. 31) will benefit Make-A-Wish.You can also donate directly to Make-A-Wish via Macy's website.

This holiday season may be a tough one this year, but you can bring joy to children fighting critical illnesses by delivering hope for their wishes to come true.

via Twins Trust / Twitter

Twins born with separate fathers are rare in the human population. Although there isn't much known about heteropaternal superfecundation — as it's known in the scientific community — a study published in The Guardian, says about one in every 400 sets of fraternal twins has different fathers.

Simon and Graeme Berney-Edwards, a gay married couple, from London, England both wanted to be the biological father of their first child.

"We couldn't decide on who would be the biological father," Simon told The Daily Mail. "Graeme said it should be me, but I said that he had just as much right as I did."

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via Elliot Page / Instagram

Elliot Page, once publicly known as Ellen Page, has announced he is transgender. The announcement makes the Oscar-nominated actor one of the most high-profile celebrities to come out as transgender.

The actor currently stars in Netflix's "The Umbrella Academy" and has acted in films such as "Juno," "Inception," and the "X-Men" franchise.

Page made the announcement on social media where he celebrated the joy of coming out while taking the opportunity to discuss the issues faced by the transgender community.

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