The Optimist: She married a stranger at the Mall of America 20 years ago. It ended up her ‘greatest love story.’

My violin was my best friend. Then I realized I needed people.; She married a stranger at the Mall of America 20 years ago. It ended up her ‘greatest love story.’
The Washington Post
The Optimist
Stories that inspire
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At night she suffered through searing pain, by morning it mysteriously vanished
Another medical mystery solved: Two doctors blamed a kayaking injury. A scan eventually revealed something much scarier.
By Sandra G. Boodman • Read more »
My violin was my best friend. Then I realized I needed people.
“At 28 years old, I was the example of a lonely young person, exhibit A of the solitary millennial.”
By Kira M. Newman • Read more »
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She married a stranger at the Mall of America 20 years ago. It ended up her ‘greatest love story.’
“He was a great husband and family man,” Bethy told the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “He had a great love for life and people. We laughed a lot. We still did, right up until the end.”
By Allyson Chiu • Read more »
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93-year-old World War II vet finally gets high school diploma
“I’m proud of it,” Robert Lockard said from his home in Columbus, Ohio. “I finally did it.”
By Allison Klein • Read more »
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Six months. 5,700 miles. One ocean. Ben Lecomte wants to be first to swim across Pacific.
Twenty years ago, he swam across the Atlantic Ocean. This time, he’ll have to survive sharks and the world’s largest trash collection.
By Rick Maese • Read more »
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I teach writing in prison. During one class, things got real — even for me.
“When it was my turn to read, I was hesitant. I’ve been warned — by almost anyone who knows I teach writing in prison — to keep my private life private.”
By Allison Langer • Read more »
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NBA Twitter: A sports bar that doesn’t close, where the stars pull up a seat next to you
The NBA still isn’t TV’s most-watched league, but on Twitter, it’s found a deeper way to connect with fans.
By Rick Maese • Read more »
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At the National Spelling Bee, twin competitors have twice the fun
A record-shattering 516 spellers qualified for nationals this year, compared with 291 last year. In years past, the only way to reach nationals was to win a regional or statewide bee. Can you spell tortellini?
By Amy B Wang • Read more »
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Perpective
The child-free life: Why so many American women are deciding not to have kids
Women are voting with their wombs, choosing a very different path than their mothers and grandmothers.
By Petula Dvorak • Read more »
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An undocumented immigrant saved a child dangling from a Paris balcony. Now he’s a national hero.
Mamoudou Gassama has emerged as a national hero despite having been in France for less than six months.
By James McAuley • Read more »
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