Man Kidnapped as Child 33 Years Ago Finds Mother With Map of His Village Drawn From Memory

A 37-year-old man from Henan Province, in Eastern China, recently found his biological mother 33-years after being abducted, thanks to a map of his home village that he drew from memory.

Li Jingwei was only four years old when he was abducted outside his family home in Yunan and sold to another family thousands of kilometers away. It was a neighbor who lured him with a toy and then drove him 2,000 kilometers to Henan Province, where he sold him to a family that raised him as his own. It’s unclear if he ever tried to run away, but what is known is that he spent many nights remembering what his parents and his home looked like, which ended up helping him reunite with his mother 33 years after his abduction. Li used his childhood memories to draw a crude yet detailed map of his home village and then turned to social media for help, asking people where they thought it could be.

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72-Year-Old Woman Has 19 Consecutive Bench Press World Champion Titles, Is Going for 20

Chiyomi Sawa, a 72-year-old woman from Japan has been the undisputed World Masters Women’s Bench Press Champion for the last 19 years, and she doesn’t plan to stop dominating anytime soon.

Walking past Chiyomi Sawa on the street, you’d be forgiven for mistaking her for just a petite, slightly overweight pensioner, but in reality, she is a natural-born athlete with her sights set on her 20th consecutive world bench press champion title. Ever since she started competing at the highest level, in 2006, Sawa has dominated the world championship, winning first place at every edition, in different weight classes. The 72-year-old is now eyeing champion title number 20, and judging by her track record, she’ll most likely claim it.

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Meet Shauna Rae, a 22-Year-Old Woman Stuck In an 8-Year-Old’s Body

After surviving brain cancer as a child, 22-year-old Shauna Rae’ growth was stunted and she is now a young woman stuck in the body of an 8-year-old.

Shauna Rae was diagnosed with brain cancer when she was only 6 months old and underwent chemotherapy treatment that saved her life but also caused damage to her pituitary gland, which caused her to stop growing. Although there is no conclusive evidence that chemotherapy caused the severe deformation of Shauna’s pituitary gland, the cancer treatment has been known to occasionally cause endocrine problems in patients. But the young woman managed to get over her problem, and despite looking like a child, she longs to be treated as an adult.

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Hero Doctor Performs Over 37,000 Free Surgeries to Give Children a Chance at a Better Life

An Indian plastic surgeon is being praised as a hero without a cape after spending much of his life performing over 37,000 free procedures to correct children’s cleft palates and cleft lips.

According to the CDC, cleft lip and cleft palate are birth defects that occur when a baby’s lip or mouth do not form properly during pregnancy. These defects cause a variety of problems, which range from the inability to access milk as babies, to bullying and discrimination later on in life. Both birth defects can be corrected with the help of plastic surgery, but these procedures are, unfortunately, not available to the poor families who need them most. In India, one plastic surgeon has emerged as the benefactor of tens of thousands of babies and children, correcting their cleft lips or cleft palate for free, and thus giving them the chance at a much better life.

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Mother Chases Leopard for Over a Mile, Fights It to Save Her Son

A brave Indian woman reportedly chased after a leopard for over a mile, fighting it with her bare hands in order to rescue her young son from its claws.

The woman, identified as Kiran Baiga, from Badi Jhiriya tribal village, in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, was reportedly sitting outside her hut with her three children, including an infant in her lap, on November 28, when a leopard suddenly pounced on her six-year-old by, Rahul. Before she could even react, the strong feline grabbed the boy in its jaws and took off running toward the nearby Sanjay Gandhi National Park. Kiran quickly handed her infant to her other child, told them to stay in their hut, and started running after the leopard, in a desperate attempt to save her child.

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Bartek Ostalowski – The World’s Only Armless Professional Sports Driver

Despite losing both arms in a tragic accident, a motorsports enthusiast has managed to pursue his passion by using his feet to drive cars and even competing against able-bodied drivers in drifting competitions.

Bartek Ostalowski lost both his arms in a motorcycle accident in 2006, but that wasn’t enough to kill his dream of one day becoming a professional racecar driver. Finding himself armless at just 20-years-old and faced with the daunting task of learning to drive a car on a race circuit must have been quite the shock for Bartek, but he mustered the courage and the drive to push on, and in three years time he became a master of maneuvering a racecar with his feet. Today, Bartek Ostalowski is the world’s only professional sport driver who drives using his feet.

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Cat Miraculously Survives 52 Days Alone Locked in an Abandoned House

A lucky cat somehow managed to survive 52 days locked in an abandoned house in the Dutch town of Vlaardingen, eating paper and struggling to find water sources.

At the end of last month, the new owners of a house in Vlaardingen were shocked to see a thin, visibly malnourished cat race past them as they opened the front door of their property. They had bought the place at an auction, so this was the first time they set foot in it. Animal Shelter Vlaardingen was contacted and they managed to catch the feline and started an investigation. It turns out that the former owner had disappeared on July 1st and the cat had been struggling to survive by itself ever since.

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China’s Anti-Desertification Poster Family Has Been Fighting the Gobi Desert for 22 Years

Wang Tianchang and his family moved into the Gobi Desert 22 years ago, at a time when most people were running away from the encroaching wasteland. The Wangs have been fighting the desert ever since, becoming a symbol of China’s anti-desertification campaign.

Desertification is one of China’s most serious environmental problems. The great Gobi Desert at stretching along the border with Mongolia has so far eaten away about 650 million acres of the country’s land and is showing no signs of slowing down. As it moves ever deeper into the heart of China, massive sandstorms blow sand into the capital Beijing and other major cities, putting millions of lives at risk. The Great Green Wall, a reforestation program designed to create a 2,800-mile tree barrier at the edge of the advancing desert has had limited success so far, but the Chinese media machine focuses less on the shortcomings and more on the successes, using everyday heroes like Wang Tianchang and his family.

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Marathon Runner Learns to Live Without Stomach, Colon and Gallbladder

36-year-old Juan Dual likes to joke that he is empty inside, but in his case the phrase has a literal meaning. Over the years, he has had his stomach, colon, rectum and gallbladder removed, but he has learned to live without them.

Juan’s sad but inspiring story began when he was only 13-years-old. It was then that he was diagnosed with a terrible hereditary condition called familial multiple polyposis, which left him with a 99.8% chance of developing cancer of the digestive system. His grandmother and an uncle of hers died of colon adenocarcinoma, and his father had undergone surgery of the bowels to avoid succumbing to the same fate. At age 19, right after finishing high-school, Juan underwent a tough operation to have his colon and rectum removed. Sadly, it was only the beginning…

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French Pensioner and Rescued Pigeon Are Inseparable Friends

Xavier Bouget, an 80-year-old pensioner from France’s Brittany region, and Blanchon, a majestic white pigeon, have been best friends for two years, ever since the Frenchman rescued the bird from becoming a cat’s lunch.

Xavier first met his unlikely companion two years ago, while walking to his house in the town of Gommenec’h. He noticed this small, almost featherless pigeon chick fall out of its nest, in a desperate attempt to escape a hungry cat. He didn’t think to help it at first, but when he got home and mentioned it to his wife, Marie-Françoise, she asked him why he didn’t pick it up. So he went back to get the small pigeon chick, which had miraculously managed to escape the purring predator until his return. Xavier came home with the frail bird in his bird, not knowing that it would soon become his best and closest friend.

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The Desert Healer – Man Spends Two Decades Creating Green Oasis in Middle of Cold Desert

Anand Dhawaj Negi, a retired bureaucrat turned desert farmer, spent over two decades of his life turning the cold wastes of northern India’s Himachal Pradesh into a vibrant oasis.

In 1977, the Indian Government kickstarted an ambitious program to mitigate the adverse effects of desertification in the Asian country’s cold and hot deserts. A. D. Negi  worked in the financial department in charge of the Desert Development Program and saw millions of dollars go down the drain with no real results to show for it. Whenever he asked scientists and officials involved in the program why there was no real progress, the answer would always be that they lacked the technology to develop any type of sustainable crops in the inhospitable environment that is the desert. A farmer’s son himself, Negi grew tired of excuses and took a leave of absence in 1999 to take a crack at it himself. By 2003, he had already permanently retired from his job to concentrate all of his energy on his growing desert oasis.

A native of Sunam village in Kinnaur, Negi took it upon himself to turn a barren patch of land in the cold desert of Himachal Pradesh into a green oasis just to show everyone, particularly the struggling farmers in the area that it could be done. It wasn’t the easiest thing to do in the world, but the former bureaucrat knew what he was getting into and had the ambition and patience to see it through.

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Eco-Warrior Spends 24 Years Turning Barren Hills Into Lush Green Forest

Once called a madman and laughed at by members of his community, an Indonesian man is now being hailed as a hero after spending a quarter of a century covering 250 hectares of barren hillsides around his home with banyan and ficus trees.

The story of Sadiman, the Indonesian man who singlehandedly brought a forest back to life, began in the early 1990s, but the problem he helped fix can be traced back to the 1960s. It was then that great forest fires ravaged the forests on the southern slope of Lawu Mountain, in Central Java, turning hundreds of hectares state-owned pine forest to ash and leaving barren hills in their place. For decades dozens of villages in the Regency of Wonogiri battled draughts and famine, until an unlikely hero took it upon himself to bring back the forest and create a better life for him and his community.

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Indian Man Turns Barren Land Into 10,000-Tree Orchard

An Indian man who started planting trees in a barren, sand-filled field 15 years ago is now being praised for transforming the wasteland into a 10,000-tree orchard.

Satyendra Gautam Manjhi, a simple man from the small village of Imaliyachak, in the Indian state of Bihar, claims he was inspired to start planting trees after being visited by Dashrath Manjhi, known as “the man who moved a mountain“. The story of how he spent over 20 years chiseling away at a mountain to make a road to his village has inspired a generation, including the protagonist of this story. Satyendrav says that Dashrath himself told him to start planting an orchard, and that’s exactly what he did.

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Cat Survives Three-Week Journey Locked in Shipping Container With No Food or Water

A resourceful feline has surprised the workers of a shipping company when it emerged from a locked container after spending three weeks at sea with no food or water.

Earlier this month, Ukrainian logistics company Star Shine Shipping LTD took to Facebook to report a rather unusual tale of survival involving a curious feline. When opening a sealed container that had traveled over two thousand kilometers from Ukraine to Israel, over a period of three weeks, the company’s staff found a grey cat inside. The animal looked a bit scared, but was otherwise in good condition, despite having endured a long journey without any food or water.

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The Story of a Man Who Spent 72 Hours with 72 Venomous Snakes To Prove They Only Bite if Provoked

Respected Indian herpetologist Neelam Kumar Khaire has a very interesting record to his name. In his youth, this reptile lover spent 72 hours in an enclosure with 72 venomous snakes for company. He proved that the snakes only bite when provoked, and set a Guinness record in the process.

Khaire’s legendary feat dates back to 1980, when the then 28-year-old receptionist at a hotel in Pune decided to challenge the record set by South African Peter Snyemaris, a year before. Snyemaris had spent 50 hours with 18 venomous and six semi-poisonous snakes in Johannesburg, South Africa, but Neelam believed that an Indian deserved the world record more, seeing as India was known as a land of snakes. Despite opposition from local authorities like the police, which would neither take him seriously nor permit him to go ahead with his plan, on January 20, 1980, Neelam Kumar Khaire stepped in a glass enclosure with 72 venomous snakes.

Neelam Kumar Khaire fell in love with snakes in his early 20s, while working as the manager of a holiday home at Matheran, near Bombay. Snakes were frequent visitors of that place, and even though the other members of the staff simply killed them on sight, he could never do the same.

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