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The second Invictus Games began in Orlando, Florida, on Sunday, May 8.

Founded by Prince Harry, the biennial event brings together active duty and veteran military service members with visible and invisible injuries to compete in 10 different sports.

The games debuted in London in 2014, and this year, more than 500 athletes from 15 different countries, along with thousands of fans and family members converged in Orlando at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex for the five-day event.


Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Invictus.

Check out these 18 incredible images from Orlando as the Invictus Games get underway.

1. The opening ceremonies were a beautiful celebration of courage and competition.


Photo by Tim Rooke/Getty Images.

2. There were presentations from the U.S. military, including the U.S. Silent Drill Platoon, which performs exercises in absolute silence to showcase the discipline and professionalism of the Marine Corps.

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Invictus.

3. Invictus Games founder and veteran Prince Harry spoke to the crowd of athletes, families, and fans.

"I'm a long way from London tonight..." the prince said, "...but when I look out, I see so many familiar faces, servicemen and women, their friends and their families, and all of the people who got them here. I feel like I'm at home."

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Invictus.

4. All 15 teams entered the arena to a roaring crowd.

And just like the Olympics, there are matching uniforms, flags, and fanfare for the occasion.

The team from the Netherlands enters the arena. Photo by Gregg Newton/AFP/Getty Images.

5. That's because in addition to veteran-athletes, the complex was filled with families, friends, and fans.

Will Reynolds, captain of the American Invictus Team, was joined by his wife and daughters.

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Invictus.

6. But soon it was time to compete. Check out this fierce competitor's Wonder Woman prosthetic at a sitting volleyball match.

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Invictus.

7. There was plenty of excitement in the air as Team USA entered the Field House to compete in the rowing finals.

Photo by Alex Menendez/ Getty Images for Invictus Games.

8. To allow the athletes to compete at their highest level, there are adaptations and modifications to some of the events and equipment.

Powerlifter Christine Gauthier of Canada uses a wheelchair for mobility, but while she competes, she is secured to the weight bench.

Photo by Scott Iskowitz/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

8. Cyclists prepare to speed down the course on hand bikes.

Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

9. Archer Martin Clapton from the United Kingdom holds the arrow in his teeth while aiming at the target.

Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

10. And these competitors put it all on the line during the indoor rowing finals.

Photo by Alex Menendez/ Getty Images for Invictus Games.

11. Family members and fans from around the world have converged on Orlando to celebrate their favorite heroes.

Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

12. Even if they only get a glimpse of the competitors before they dash off.

Photo by Alex Menendez/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

13. There are 10 competitive events at the games, including sitting volleyball, indoor rowing, powerlifting, road cycling, track and field, swimming, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby, and wheelchair tennis.

Photo by Scott Iskowitz/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

14. Each event requires some serious strength, along with hours of practice, dedication, and skill...

Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

15. ...things these veterans and active duty service members have no shortage of.

Photo by Alex Menendez/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

16. For every point, win, or goal, the fans go wild!

Photo by Gerardo Mora/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

17. Because at the end of the day, this is bigger than a sporting event.

Adaptive sports provide numerous benefits for veterans with disabilities, including decreased stress, increased independence, a reduced dependence on pain and depression medications, and even higher achievement in employment and education.

Photo by Alex Menendez/Getty Images for Invictus Games.

18. It's a celebration of teamwork, fortitude, and second chances.

Invictus is Latin for "unconquered," and these athletes are just that.

The games are only a few days long, but the impact they have on the competitors, families, and fans lasts much longer.

Nerys Pearce of Team Great Britain is presented with a silver medal in the powerlifting event by President George W. Bush, honorary chairman of the Invictus Games in Orlando. Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Invictus.

Events like these are a reminder of the resilience these veterans and their families possess.

Coming back from war with injuries and illnesses isn't easy, but opportunities to compete for and represent their home nations can be a light in the shadow of recovery for these athletes and their brothers and sisters in arms.

Photo by Alex Menendez/ Getty Images for Invictus Games.


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.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

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