Good News Thursday: 5-year-old becomes youngest published author, off-duty firefighter saves toddler from burning building


5-year-old becomes youngest published author

Bella J. Dark holds her book “The Lost Cat” which she both wrote and illustrated. The young girl from Weymouth, Dorset in England, set the world record for youngest published author. (Good News Network)

A 5-year-old from England received the world record for becoming the world’s youngest author. Bella J. Dark, from Weymouth, Dorset, sold more than 2,000 copies of her book “The Lost Cat.” The book tells the story of Snowy, a cat who embarks on an adventure and learns important lessons along the way. Dark both wrote and illustrated the book which is for sale on Amazon.

The young girl hopes to publish future books, with plans already underway for a follow-up: “Snowy’s Birthday Party.” Dark overtook the title from Abhijita Gupta, who held the title for world’s youngest published author last year at age 7.

“We are just so proud of Bella and honestly can’t believe how amazing this is,” Dark’s mother Chelsie Syme said. “She has always thrived off positivity from people and just loves reading and drawing.”

Off-duty firefighter saves toddler from burning building

Stefon Douglas, a firefighter for Engine Company 276 in New York, saved a young toddler from a burning home while driving home off-duty. (Good News Network)

33-year-old Stefon Douglas rescued a young girl from a burning building after passing the house on his way home from work on Sunday, June 5. Douglas, who works as a firefighter, remembered he had a breathing apparatus in his car and used it to save the toddler, who was engulfed in smoke inside the home.

Douglas entered the home and found the girl trapped in the bathroom surrounded by smoke and flames. He first heard the girl whimpering from outside the home while knocking the fire down with a garden hose. The firefighter of Engine Company 276 carried her safely from the home and back to her mother who was safe outside.

“There are definitely some times I sit back and think, ‘Why me, why was I picked for this?,’” Douglas said. “I really knew nothing about the job until I got here but now I love it. It was the best decision of my life.”

Community raises $250,000 to help neighbor save her home

Community members cheer outside the home of Linda Taylor, who has lived in the neighborhood for almost two decades. The community helped her raise a quarter of a million dollars to purchase the home after being threatened with eviction. (Good News Network)

A woman in Minneapolis purchased a home she had been renting with the help of her neighbors after almost being evicted in January. Linda Taylor, who had been living in the neighborhood for two decades, was told she had to leave the home because her landlord was selling the property. Taylor was a beloved member of her community and first moved to the area as a volunteer to help the homeless and needy.

Taylor’s community raised a quarter of a million dollars to help her afford the home, after the landlord gave them until the end of June to raise the funds. The group put on an art show, bake sale, pro bono work by a realtor and received other small donations that helped make the purchase possible.

“Yesterday I went and did the closing for the house,” Taylor said. “It makes me feel so good, everything that I have given, it’s coming back to me and I want to continue to give. I love this neighborhood.”

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