Girl survives plane crash

Courage and resolution can start young. Sailor Gutzler, 7, freed herself from the wreckage of a crashed airplane, ascertained that her parents were dead, and walked nearly a mile through bush and briars to the nearest house, where she asked for help. Girl survives crash of small plane.

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Mike Celizic: A Happy Birthday

Mike Celizic, a reporter for the TODAYshow.com and a writer for MSNBC, has died of fast-moving lymphoma. He wrote a note to PZ Myers, author of Pharyngula:

I want to tell you how much I’ve learned reading your blog and how much enjoyment it has brought me. I’m a writer for the MSM [mainstream media], and it’s been a delicate balancing act for years to not be blatantly the atheist I am, lest I upset the readers, or, more important, the bosses, who quail at the mention of the topic.

I’ve written an entry on deciding not to undergo more treatment. With my last post, I’ll expose my beliefs and let the cranks and fundies weep and wail and gnash their teeth and rend their garments. I’ll be rejoining the ecosystem – anyway, my ashes will – and won’t care.

This is how Mike Celizic reacted to the news that his cancer has returned. It’s one of the last things he ever wrote. Wow. Just wow:
Cancer Journal: A Happy Birthday

Tony Lyons’ marathon swim

Tony Lyons swims for the orphans. He’s making a charity swim of 42.2 km today!

[Youtube=”http://www.youtube.com/v/ufRIFNYYV_Y%5D

“Tony Lyons will be doing a marathon Swim (42.2 km or 26.2 miles) 1688 lengths of a 25 meter pool at Canada Games Pool, 65 East Sixth Avenue, New Westminster, B.C. (www.nwpr.bc.ca) on March 27th 2009. To raise funds for the CKNW Orphan’s fund (www.cknw.com/orphans)”

LotStreetWiz is live-blogging it at marathonswimlive.

June Callwood, social activist & author, dies at 82

June Callwood, who has been fighting cancer for four years, has died. She will long be remembered for her sense of justice. Callwood was the author of thirty books and started fifty social organizations. Callwood once said,

“If you see an injustice being committed, you aren’t an observer, you are a participant.”

Support the Books for Israel project

Support Nina’s Books4Israel Project. She is sending children’s books to poor schools in Israel, especially to Bedouin schools in the Negev Desert.

Donations are welcome–either books for the children or cash for postage and shipping.

Nina is a technical writer who likes to knit in her spare time. She’s the one who told me about BookCrossing.

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June Callwood on Life, Death, and Everything

Canada’s June Callwood has been a noted feminist and author, and a very gracious human being, for many years. I had the privilege of being introduced to her, years ago, by Margaret Fraser, the subject of Callwood’s book, Twelve Weeks in Spring.

She was interviewed by George Stromboulopoulos of CBC TV’s The Hour. Over the last three years she has been battling cancer. It’s mysterious, with secondary cancers all over the place when they can’t find the primary one. They gave her six months to live–three years ago. But now it’s on the move again and she’s saying goodbye to friends and family. She wants no fuss and no memorial service.

When George asked he what she thought came after this, she said, “Nothing. There’s nothing after this. We get a life, now, here.” Her point is that it’s up to us to make that life count.

And she’s giving her family and admirers the final gift that is ours to give–she is facing death with courage and without complaint.

Canada’s first weatherman, Percy Sattzman, dies

Percy Saltzman, who brought the idea of dynamic weather reporting to television and made it happen, died at age 91 after a brief illness. Mr. Saltzman received the Order of Canada in 2003. He was an interesting character. Read about him.