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- 12/01/16--09:52: _World AIDS Day 2016...
- 12/01/16--15:35: _Security Cameras Re...
- 12/01/16--16:55: _National Christmas ...
- 12/01/16--13:34: _Schultz Stepping Do...
- 12/01/16--16:01: _National Christmas ...
- 12/01/16--17:40: _Cubans Mourn, Pay F...
- 12/01/16--21:37: _Trump Thanks Suppor...
- 12/01/16--05:27: _Extreme Weather: De...
- 12/01/16--15:29: _ Mall of America Ge...
- 12/01/16--21:42: _Trump: I'm Going to...
- 12/02/16--04:32: _Workers Still Losin...
- 12/02/16--07:09: _Ford Recalls 680,00...
- 12/02/16--08:56: _Shkreli Belittles S...
- 12/02/16--08:11: _From the Archives: ...
- 12/02/16--10:16: _Deep Learning: Teac...
- 12/02/16--13:16: _Inventor of General...
- 12/02/16--12:47: _'Changed My Life': ...
- 12/02/16--19:01: _Teen Found Decapita...
- 12/02/16--19:47: _'Clown of Aleppo' K...
- 12/02/16--15:26: _Moose Wanders Onto ...
- 12/01/16--09:52: World AIDS Day 2016: Activists Urge Testing, Education
- 12/01/16--15:35: Security Cameras Record House Burned Down By Tenn. Wildfires
- 12/01/16--16:55: National Christmas Tree Shines Through The Years
- 12/01/16--13:34: Schultz Stepping Down as Starbucks CEO
- 12/01/16--16:01: National Christmas Tree Lighting
- 12/01/16--17:40: Cubans Mourn, Pay Final Respects to Fidel Castro
- 12/01/16--21:37: Trump Thanks Supporters, Names Mattis in Ohio
- 12/01/16--05:27: Extreme Weather: Deadly Tornadoes, Flooding in the South
- 12/01/16--15:29: Mall of America Gets Its First Black Santa
- 12/01/16--21:42: Trump: I'm Going to Appoint Gen. Mattis to Lead Pentagon
- 12/02/16--04:32: Workers Still Losing Their Jobs Tell Trump: Don't Forget Us
- 12/02/16--07:09: Ford Recalls 680,000 Cars Over Seat Belt Safety
- 12/02/16--08:56: Shkreli Belittles Students Who Recreated His $750 Drug
- 12/02/16--10:16: Deep Learning: Teaching Computers to Predict the Future
- 12/02/16--13:16: Inventor of General Tso's Chicken Dies at 98
- 12/02/16--19:01: Teen Found Decapitated Near River
- 12/02/16--19:47: 'Clown of Aleppo' Killed in Airstrikes
- 12/02/16--15:26: Moose Wanders Onto Vermont Farm, Attempts to Befriend Cows
Dec. 1 marks World AIDS Day. It's a time to remember over 35 million people who have died from the disease since the early-1980s and show support for those who are struggling with it now. It's also a chance for health organizations and charities to raise awareness about testing and treatment.
In the United Kingdom, activists are spreading the message that HIV stigma is “not retro, just wrong.” The U.S. World AIDS Day theme for 2016 is “Leadership. Commitment. Impact,” and the United Nations launched the “Hands up for #HIVprevention” awareness campaign, emphasizing the importance of protecting at-risk demographics like young women and girls.
A red ribbon is a universal symbol of support and solidarity for those living with HIV or AIDS. Here's how organizations are raising awareness and money to help combat AIDS:
World Health Organization
For World AIDS Day, the UN agency is advocating that health organizations should make self-testing equipment more readily available. About 14 million people around the world don’t know they have the disease -- one in eight AIDS survivors in the U.S. goes undiagnosed.
Self-testing allows individuals to check their HIV/AIDS status. If they do get a positive test result, they can then explore much-needed medical resources that will improve their standard of living and protect others from infection.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, there are two types of self-HIV tests: the Home Access HIV-1 Test System and the OraQuick In-home HIV test. You can buy a self-testing kit at drug stores like Walgreens and Rite Aid.
When U2’s Bono and activist Bobby Shriver founded (RED) in 2006, they were bent on eradicating HIV/AIDS in Africa. Since then, they’ve raised $365 million for grants to provide survivors with anti-retroviral treatments that can cost as little as 30 cents a day, but that still aren’t accessible to about 18 million people suffering from the disease.
This World AIDS Day, (RED) has partnered with companies to raise money for the Global Fund to Help Fight AIDS. For every handcrafted holiday drink purchased today, Starbucks will donate 25 cents to the cause. Profits from 20 Apple games sold on the iTunes app store are also going toward AIDS prevention, and New Yorkers can swing by the (BANK OF AMERICA)RED pop-up in Bryant Park to buy holiday gifts through Dec. 4.
According to (RED)’s website, “Bank of America will donate $1 for every purchase made with a Bank of America card using Apple Pay, up to $1M” beginning on Dec. 1. This contribution will be doubled by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which has promised to match the money raised by (RED) this year, up to $78 million.
This World AIDS Day, the website’s team is asking Americans to educate themselves about the HIV/AIDS epidemic and how it manifests in the U.S. They’ve put together a resource page for readers to peruse, including links to the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, a timeline of HIV/AIDS, and information about the Affordable Care Act, which has provided coverage to survivors who couldn’t find insurance before because of their pre-existing condition.
Photo Credit: AP
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Two Thousand candles were lit in memory of victims of AIDS on World AIDS Day Thursday, Dec. 1. 2016 at Gammeltorv Square in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Chris Allen watched his Gatlinburg, Tennessee home burn down through security footage when he received a call on Nov. 28, 2016 that his smoke alarm was going off. Residents continue to wait to return to their town as first responders worked to bank down the remaining fire and clear debris.
Photo Credit: WSMV
Generations of U.S. presidents have lighted the National Christmas Tree with a button since President Calvin Coolidge first started the tradition in 1923. See the White House "community" tree through the years.
Photo Credit: Greg Gibson/AP
The National Christmas Tree stands during the 1995 Christmas Pageant of Peace Wednesday, Dec. 6, 1995 on the White House Ellipse.
Starbucks Chairman and CEO Howard Schultz will leave his post as the company's chief executive, the company said Thursday.
Schultz will become the company's executive chairman, and current President and COO Kevin Johnson will become Starbucks' next CEO.
The changes will take place on April 3, the company said.
Starbucks shares dipped about 4 percent in after hours trading following the news of the planned leadership transition.
Schultz first joined Starbucks in 1982 as director of operations and marketing when the company only had four stores, according to Starbucks.
Photo Credit: AP
In this Wednesday, March 23, 2016, file photo, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz speaks at the coffee company's annual shareholders meeting in Seattle.
Barack Obama and Michelle Obama have lit the National Christmas Tree for the last time as president and first lady Thursday.
The 94th annual National Christmas Tree Lighting is taking place on the Ellipse at the White House Thursday evening.
The first couple and daughter Sasha took the stage to light the tree after a musical performance by Kelly Clarkson. The president briefly spoke to the gathered crowd.
Tickets to the ceremony were required; they were available through a lottery held in October.
Those without tickets can see the entire show Monday on the Hallmark Channel. In addition to Clarkson, the Lumineers, Garth Brooks, Chance the Rapper, James Taylor and Yolanda Adams were just a few of the performers scheduled to perform.
The ceremony is rounding out the National Park Service's Centennial year.
President Calvin Coolidge began the tree lighting tradition in 1923, lighting a 48-foot fir tree decked out with 2,500 electric bulbs on the Ellipse. The tree was switched to LED lights in 2007.
And the tree itself has changed over the years. In early 2011, the tree that had served as the National Christmas Tree for more than three decades was felled by high winds. Its replacement was planted a month later and was lit for Christmas 2011, but died the following spring due to complications from transplant shock.
The current tree, a Colorado blue spruce, was planted on the Ellipse in fall 2012 and has been used for the lighting ever since.
Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
People line the street in Santa Clara, Cuba as the remains of former Cuban President Fidel Castro pass by on their cross-country journey from Havana to Santiago de Cuba on Dec. 1, 2016. Castro, the revolutionary leader who brought communism to his island nation in 1959, died Nov. 25 at 90.
On his first official trip since the election, President-elect Donald Trump traveled to Ohio, the first top in a battleground “Thank You Tour.” Sounding a lot like a candidate, he promised to grow the economy, shrink taxes and rebuild an energy independent America. And he announced he’s naming retired Gen. James Mattis as his Defense secretary.
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci
President-elect Donald Trump gestures as he speaks during a "USA Thank You" tour event, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, in Cincinnati.
Take a look at photos of extreme weather from the U.S. and around the world, from floods to snow to rough seas.
Photo Credit: AP
Serenity Brooks, 5, holds a baby doll as she digs for her belongings after a suspected tornado ripped through the town of Rosalie, Alabama, Nov. 30, 2016.
The Mall of America is celebrating diversity this holiday season.
For the first time since it opened in the early 1990s, a black Santa will hear children's wishes at the Minnesota mall.
"It's pretty historic," Landon Luther, co-owner of The Santa Experience, which runs a small photo studio in the mall, told NBC. "We want Santa to be for everyone."
Luther said he wanted a diverse bunch to pose for photos with visitors this year, so he sent staff members to a Santa convention in Bronson, Missouri.
There was a single black Santa at the convention, Texas resident Larry Jefferson. Luther got in touch with Jefferson, who agreed to a four-day contract at the country's largest mall.
And so far, there's been nothing but holiday cheer for Jefferson.
"It's been nothing but positive. We're getting a lot of support," Luther told NBC.
In fact, Jefferson is so popular that he's now fully booked for the weekend that he is scheduled to appear at the mall.
Luther is hoping Jefferson will come back to the Mall of America for a longer stint as Santa next year.
Photo Credit: The Santa Experience
Santa Larry Jefferson, pictured, is the first black Santa to be featured at the Mall of America's Santa Experience.
Donald Trump returned to his campaign roots Thursday in his first major public appearance since Election Day, resembling the pugnacious, brawling campaigner more than the traditional president-to-be as he held court in front of thousands of adoring fans — and even announced a Cabinet pick from the stage.
Trump's first stop on this "Thank you" tour to salute his supporters was in Ohio and, ever the showman, he made the surprise announcement that he will be offering the post of Defense Secretary to retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis. Trump said he was supposed to unveil that Monday, so he jokingly warned the Cincinnati crowd to "not tell anyone."
The raucous rallies during the Trump campaign road show often had the feel of a rock concert, and Thursday night in Cincinnati had all the hallmarks of a reunion tour: Trump took a veiled swipe at fellow Republicans. He remembered his general election foe by joking, "We had fun fighting Hillary, didn't we?" He boasted about size of his victory and repeatedly bashed the media. Protesters briefly interrupted the proceedings. And the crowd chanted "Build the Wall" and "Lock Her Up."
The president-elect had eased up on those campaign promises recently, suggesting the U.S.-Mexico border wall could be part-fence and indicating no willingness to pursue criminal charges against Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton.
Perhaps befitting an encore presentation, the downtown arena that Trump packed in October — drawing a crowd that was one of the loudest of the campaign — was only about half-full Thursday night. But the thousands who were there cheered Trump as he declared to restore American to greatness, saying, "Now is not the time to downsize our dreams."
"Never again will anyone's interests come before the interests of the American people. It's not going to happen," Trump thundered. "The old rules no longer apply. Anything we want for our country is now possible."
Trump did nothing to downplay expectations before he takes office, declaring that "America will start winning again, big league." Much like he did during the stretch run of the campaign, he read from teleprompters, but he was bombastic as ever, spending more than a dozen minutes bragging about his victory before outlining his economic plan.
He boasted about his wins in Midwest states that normally vote Democratic, declaring he didn't just "break the blue wall, we shattered it." He veered off-script to make fun of a protester, saying she was being ejected from the arena so "she could go back to Mommy." He repeated his recent threat that, despite Constitutional protections, "if people burn the American flag, there should be consequences." And he repeated many of his signature campaign promises, including a pledge to "construct a great wall at the border."
And he stunned his own aides when he announced the Mattis pick from the stage. Hours earlier, Trump's transition team denied that he had settled on a defense secretary despite a report in The Washington Post that Mattis was the choice. "No decision has been made yet with regard to Secretary of Defense," spokesman Jason Miller tweeted at 4:40 p.m.
Mattis, nicknamed "Mad Dog," is considered one of the foremost strategic thinkers of his generation but to gain confirmation as Pentagon chief, he would need Congress to waive a requirement that a defense secretary be a civilian for at least seven years before taking up the post.
Mattis retired as chief of U.S. Central Command in 2013 after serving more than four decades in the Marine Corps. There is no sense of strong opposition to his nomination in Congress.
Trump, who has long spoken of feeding off the energy of his raucous crowds, first floated the idea of a victory tour just days after winning the election but has instead prioritized filling Cabinet positions. He is also expected to hold rallies in Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina and Michigan in the coming weeks, though details have yet to be announced. His supporters were thrilled that he had hit the road again.
"That he wants to do this, to take time out of his schedule to fly out here and personally thank the people ... shows what kind of man he is," said Josh Kanowitz, 43. "He's one of us."
But while Kanowitz largely praised Trump's initial moves as president-elect, he visibly recoiled at the suggestion that he might pick Mitt Romney as secretary of tate, saying the 2012 Republican presidential nominee was "someone we should leave behind as we move forward."
Others at the rally also expressed some hesitancy at Trump's picks, with a few suggesting that choosing former Goldman Sachs partner Steven Mnuchin as Treasury Secretary was not exactly fulfilling Trump's campaign promise to "Drain the Swamp" and eliminate corruption and elitism from Washington.
But most were inclined to give the president-elect the benefit of the doubt.
"He's a businessman. He'll pick talented people to work for him and then keep them in line," said Jaime Bollmer, a 28-year-old teacher from Lockland, Ohio. "He's a leader. That's what leaders do."
The rally in Cincinnati was the second stop on a victory lap through the Midwest on Thursday, coming hours after Trump saluted workers, owners and himself at a Carrier plant in Indiana. There he declared that a deal to keep a local plant open instead of moving operations to Mexico was only the first of many business victories to come.
Some questions remain about the extent of the victory at Carrier, which announced this week that it will keep an Indianapolis plant open. In February, the heating and air conditioning company said it would shut the plant and send jobs to Mexico, and video of angry workers being informed about the decision soon went viral.
"Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences. It's not going to happen. It's simply not going to happen," Trump said to workers at the Indianapolis plant.
During the campaign, Trump had often pointed to the Indiana plant's moving plans as a result of poor Obama administration policies, and he pledged to revive U.S. manufacturing. Officials said this week that Carrier had agreed to keep some 800 union jobs at the plant.
Seth Martin, a spokesman for Carrier, said Indiana offered the air conditioning and furnace manufacturer $7 million in tax incentives after negotiations with Trump's team to keep some jobs in the state.
Photo Credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images
President-elect Donald Trump shakes hands with retired United States Marine Corps general James Mattis after their meeting at Trump International Golf Club, Nov. 19, 2016 in Bedminster Township, New Jersey.
As Donald Trump held a victory lap touting a decision by Carrier to keep an Indianapolis plant open rather than move the facility to Mexico, workers at another of the company's Indiana plants said they are still losing their jobs, NBC News reported.
Around 700 jobs will be lost when United Technologies Electronic Controls moves to Mexico sometime in 2018, workers told NBC News. CNBC confirmed Thursday that the company still plans to close the Huntington plant and move it to Mexico.
"What about our jobs in Huntington," read a sign carried by Bob Breedlove, 60, who has worked at the Huntington facility for 11 years and was told layoffs will begin sometime in 2017.
Breedlove voted for Trump. "I still support him, I'm glad he is able to save some jobs," he said of the Indianapolis deal. "Obviously, I wish he would be able to save ours also."
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci
President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence wave as they visit to Carrier factory, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, in Indianapolis, Ind.
Ford is recalling more than 680,000 midsize sedans mainly in North America because the front seat belts may not hold people in a crash.
The recall covers certain 2013 to 2016 Ford Fusion, 2013 to 2015 Lincoln MKZ and 2015 and 2016 Ford Mondeo cars.
Ford says heat generated when the seat belt pre-tensioners deploy can cause cables to break. If that happens the belts may not hold people. Ford says it knows of two injuries related to the problem.
Pre-tensioners tighten seat belts when they sense that cars are stopping.
Dealers will inject insulation into the pre-tensioners to protect the cables from heat at no cost to owners. The recall is expected to begin on Jan. 16.
Most of the cars are in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
Photo Credit: Getty Images, File
A Ford Fusion seen on a Miami dealership lot on September 26, 2014. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Martin Shkreli, the infamous former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals who hiked the price on a live-saving drug from $13.50 to $750, is making news again. This time, it's for belittling a group of Australian students who replicated the active ingredient in his anti-parasitic medication for just $20, CNN reported.
The drug, Daraprim, is used to treat people with malaria. It is also used for those with weakened immune systems, such as chemotherapy and HIV patients. The group of 17-year-olds recreated the active ingredient in Daraprim, pyrimethamine, in a Sydney Grammar School chemistry lab.
But the 33-year-old so-called “pharma bro” Martin Shkreli was not impressed. He slammed the students’ achievement on Twitter and Periscope.
“These kids who ‘made Daraprim’ reminds me of Ahmed who ‘made the clock,” he tweeted. “Dumb journalists want a feel good story.”
The students worked with scientists from the University of Sydney under the direction of Dr. Alice Williamson and Associate Professor Matthew Todd.
"There were definitely a few obstacles along the way," said Brandon Lee, a Sydney student who took part in the research. "We had to try a lot of different reactions with a lot of different chemicals. But eventually we got there -- it took a bit over a year."
Daraprim is named on the World Health Organization’s list of essential medicines. They produced about $110,000 worth of the replica, according to Turing’s prices, which are inflated 5000 percent. However, they could not sell it due to FDA regulations and Turing’s marketing rights to the drug.
Shkreli also expressed frustration at “the inability for people to understand how drugs come to be made” as social media users tweeted snarky responses to him. He replied to dozens of tweets, mentioning his patent and the complexities that he believes are being overlooked in the students' replication.
“Labor and equipment costs? Didn’t know you could get physical chemists to work for free?” he wrote. “I should use high school kids to make my medicines!”
And Shkreli had a final, Walter White-esque response to the “Breaking Good” project.
“And never, ever compare your cook game to mine,” he tweeted. “Highest yield, best purity, most scale. I have the synthesis game on lock.”
Shkreli was arrested in December 2015 on allegations of securities fraud. He pleaded not guilty during his hearing in July. His trial date has been set for June 26, 2017.
Photo Credit: AP
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Pharmaceutical chief Martin Shkreli smiles on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 4, 2016, during the House Committee on Oversight and Reform Committee hearing on his former company's decision to raise the price of a lifesaving medicine. Shkreli refused to testify before U.S. lawmakers who excoriated him over severe hikes for a drug sold by a company that he acquired.
U.S. Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, who was selected as President-elect Donald Trump's choice for Secretary of Defense, drew fire for controversial remarks years ago. This clip is an Anne State report from the NBC 7 archives produced Feb. 1, 2005.
Anne State reports
Researchers have configured computers to predict the immediate future by examining a photograph, NBC News reported.
A program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has analyzed 2 million videos to see how scenes typically progress, and can generate a 1.5-second video clip predicting a scenario based on a photograph.
The MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory hopes to generate longer videos with more complexity in the future.
To create the program, the team relied on a scientific technique called deep learning, which uses mathematical structures to pull patterns from massive data sets. It could lead to computers making diagnoses from medical images, customer predictions or even operating vehicles.
Photo Credit: Christian Science Monitor/Getty
Postdoctoral scholar, Scott Kuinversa demonstrates the capabilities of the Atlas robot during the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory's Demo Day on April 6, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts.
Chef Peng Chang-kuei, the inventor of the iconic Chinese food dish General Tso's chicken, died at the age of 98 on Wednesday, the Taiwan News reports.
His son, Chuck Peng, told the Associated Press that his father died Wednesday in Taipei, Taiwan's capital. The junior Peng runs the family's Taiwan restaurant chain, where his father still cooked until a few months ago.
The Hunan, China, native began training to be a cook at just 13 years old, according to the newspaper. By the end of World War II, he was in charge of running banquets for the Chinese Nationalist government. A military uprising forced Peng to flee to Taiwan, where he created his culinary magnum opus in 1952.
The world-renowned dish is composed of breaded chicken chunks tossed and fried in a thick, sugary ginger-garlic sauce. Broccoli, baby corn and carrots are sometimes added for extra flavor.
He named the dish in honor of Tso Tsung T'ang, a respected Hunan war general, according to the Taiwan News.
He has been honored by the government of Taipei, Taiwan's people, for passing on Hunan culture.
Peng brought his famous platter stateside in 1973 with the opening of his restaurant, Peng's, on East 44th Street, according to The New York Times. News of his dish caught the attention of officials from the neighboring United Nations headquarters and dignitaries like former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.
The New York Times published one of the earliest accounts of the dish in a 1977 feature story.
"General Tso's thicken [sic] was a stir-fried masterpiece, sizzling hot in both flavor and temperature," wrote food critic Mimi Sheraton.
A 2014 documentary called "The Search for General Tso" examined the origins of the iconic plate and the history of its eponymous military leader.
A plate of General Tso's Chicken at Ollie's Restaurant in New York's Times Square, July 22, 2004. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
The Michaels employee who became the target of a customer's now-viral tirade at a Chicago store said she is in "utter shock" at the donations strangers from across the country have made in an effort to show their support this holiday season.
In a letter to those that raised more than $32,000 for her, the store manager identified only as Holli wrote "you have all single handedly changed my life."
"You will be blessed for this act of unconditional kindness," she wrote. "I never thought my ginormous dreams would become a reality so soon and at the hand of others, but with your support I can now take the steps needed to build a better future. Because of you this dark world has a lot more light in it."
Supporters rallied around the Michaels employee after video of an incident at a location in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood the day before Thanksgiving went viral.
The footage, which had been viewed more than 590,000 times as of Monday afternoon, showed an angry customer yelling at an employee claiming she was discriminated against while checking out last week. By Tuesday morning, more than 2 million people watched the footage. In the video, the white customer is seen calling a black employee at the Lakeview store “an animal” and telling one employee to “shut your face.”
She claims an employee discriminated against her and mumbled that she must have voted for Donald Trump, but the employee is heard in the video denying that claim.
“And I voted for Trump, so there,” she said. “What? You want to kick me out because of that? And look who won. Look who won.”
The woman vows to report the employees to their corporate headquarters and yells at bystanders filming the incident before calling the police. An employee can be heard in the background telling the woman she was not discriminated against, but that the employee asked if she would like to buy a reusable bag.
"When I asked for my things to be bagged, and I don't care about the size of the bag, this other woman makes a big deal about it, coming around," she says in the video. "She's screaming at me from across the store, screaming at me."
Jessie Grady, who witnessed and filmed part of the 30-minute ordeal, posted the footage to social media and started a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for the employee targeted in the so-called rant.
Grady said the employees “did nothing to provoke this verbal attack and in fact treated all customers with professionalism and courtesy.”
“I was so shocked by this unprovoked attack that I captured 17 minutes of it on video on my phone,” Grady wrote on the GoFundMe page. “I am starting this gofundme [sic] because I’d like to do something to try to make it up to the employee who was the main target of this racist attack. I’d like to show her that many people are horrified by how this woman treated her, and that we stand with her and appreciate her hard work. She inspired me because despite the hateful words that were being hurled in her direction, she stood in that entranceway calm and unmoving to protect her staff and customers.”
Both the woman in the video and bystanders called police to report the incident. Police confirmed officers were called to the store Wednesday, but when they arrived, the woman was gone and no police report could be filed.
Michaels said in a statement it does not “tolerate discrimination or racism of any kind against our team members or customers.”
“We regret that our customers and team members were affected by this unfortunate incident and are grateful for the leadership of our store team in working to resolve it without further escalation,” the statement read.
The company also tweeted Monday, “We appreciate the outpouring of support for our Chicago-based team member.”
Grady said that she was "astounded" by how big her GoFundMe campaign grew.
"What started as a small gesture to let one person know that she is valued and important to her community turned into something I never imagined," she wrote on Facebook. "I never expected this to get past the neighborhood. Our country has been completely divided in the past couple years, but somehow this one story resonated with and united millions of people."
She noted that there were "hundreds of Trump supporters who donated and sent kind messages denouncing this behavior."
"Millions of you saw that this was about more than one incident," she wrote. "This was about treating workers with dignity and respect. This was about community and kindness and standing up against hatred. These are values Americans once believed in and other countries admired us for. Shine a mirror on it. This won’t solve all of our problems, but it’s one small step."
Read the manager's full letter below:
A letter from Holli:
I'll start with this. I am in utter shock. You have all single handedly changed my life. Each of you have shown me that this world is worth living in. I have felt so misguided in a sense of why can't I get passed where I am. I've tried to be kind, I've tried to be fair, I've tried to share regardless if I was able to. I want others to smile when I smile back at them. Knowing deeply we all have a higher purpose. How can I help!!
For some time now, I've felt this overwhelming sense of failure. I want to make a positive change in this world. I know what I'm here for and that's to help others reach their higher potential. With your support I have been blessed with the opportunity to live and not just survive daily. I can properly provide for my family and meet all our children's needs. I will now have the ability to get my business up and running in order to provide a better future for us. And I can still give back to my community even more now.
You have personally contributed to SO much more than you could possible know.
I ask that you please forgive me as I'm a little afraid to make a public video. Just know that from my soul to yours. You will be blessed for this act of unconditional kindness. I never thought my ginormous dreams would become a reality so soon and at the hand of others, but with your support I can now take the steps needed to build a better future. Because of you this dark world has a lot more light in it.
Not to preach at you or push spirituality at you. That being said I pray that you gain real fulfillment in your life. I don't know you but I love you. It's weird to some people but whatever, I believe we are one people so if I love myself therefore I love you. We've been taught that what we do unto others, we receive in return.
A great teacher of mine has said "All forms of pain, suffering, illness or financial chaos are there to promote spiritual growth and character change." We are the change. You are this change. We stand together side by side in truth and know love trumps hate. Blessings to you may your light continue to break through the darkness.
-Yours sincerely Jony AKA Holli
Photo Credit: Jessie Grady
The decapitated body found along the Merrimack River in Lawrence, Massachusetts, on Thursday has been identified as a missing 16-year-old.
Lawrence resident Lee Manuel Viloria-Paulino was last seen on the evening of November 18.
Friday night, friends and family gathered for a candlelight vigil outside Lawrence High School, where Viloria-Paulino was an honors student.
"This is a tragic loss for his family and friends," Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said. "We are working tirelessly to determine the person or persons responsible for Mr. Viloria-Paulino's death."
Police were called to the Merrimack River at McCabe Court around 2:45 p.m. Thursday after a woman walking her dog found the body. The teen's head was found roughly 30 feet away from his body. For hours, crews in boats and on land searched for the victim's hands.
Officials have said little about the case, concerned that any information that is released could negatively impact their investigation.
Lawrence Mayor Daniel Rivera said at a press conference Friday that "rumors and innuendo" surrounding the case were causing concerns about public safety.
"I share everyone's frustration and anger, about the incident itself, about the lack of information currently available and, frankly, about how this can happen in our community," he said.
Rivera and Blodgett have said there is not much they can say without jeopardizing the investigation except that it is not believed to be a random act.
Rivera said he does not know if the killing might have been connected to drug or gang activity and urged people not to believe everything they are reading about the incident on social media.
"I live here, I work here and I'm concerned about this," he said. "This is a serious matter in a very big city with a lot of people."
Photo Credit: necn/Lawrence Police
Wearing a bright orange wig and colorful face paint, the “Clown of Aleppo” worked to bring laughter to children living in the ruins of the battle-torn city.
But now, the children and families who found joy in his antics are mourning his death, as the 24-year-old social worker Anas al-Basha was killed in the Mashhad neighborhood on Tuesday, according to The Associated Press, NBC News reports.
Anas al-Basha could have fled Aleppo in July, according to a Facebook post written by Mahmoud al-Basha, who identified himself as Anas' brother, but he stayed behind to help other civilians and their children.
“He lived to make children laugh and happy in the darkest most dangerous place,” reads Mahmoud's post.
Photo Credit: AP
This undated photo courtesy of Ahmad al-Khatib, a media activist in Aleppo, shows Syrian social worker Anas al-Basha, 24, dressed as a clown in Aleppo, Syria.
A farm in northern Vermont got quite a surprise this past weekend when a moose snuck into a cow pasture and appeared to try to befriend the animals there.
Cattle ranchers Sharyn and Tim Abbott were returning to their Sheldon home from an outing when they noticed a creature had joined their herd.
"I thought it was pretty cool," said Sharyn Abbott, whose Belted Galloway cows, Precious and Primrose, got up close and personal with the moose.
The Abbotts said the moose looked really healthy, and didn't appear to be in search of food or water.
"I think she was looking for companionship," Tim Abbott speculated.
At one point, the moose flopped down to rest not far from one of the cows, a picture shows. In another photo, the moose and one of the cows appear to have locked eyes, making the Abbots wonder what the animals thought of each other.
"It was a treat just to see the pictures, and get pictures close, and see how big and massive and tall they are," Sharyn Abbott said of the experience.
They said while one of their Belted Galloways, Primrose, was really friendly with the moose, the other, Precious, was much more hesitant.
"The brown one was scared to death of her," Tim Abbott said of Precious' tendency to avoid the moose.
A young child of a neighbor dubbed the moose "Molly," believing the animal needed a name.
After a full day of visiting, the Abbotts decided it was time to shoo Molly away. They explained they didn't want her getting injured or stuck in the barn if she attempted to enter.
The Abbotts also wanted to avoid the moose damaging some of the fences on their property, they said.
The Abbotts are now curious if the moose will ever come back.
"We watch for her every day, thinking she might show up again," Tim Abbott said, smiling.
We're guessing Precious and Primrose are thinking the same.
Photo Credit: Sharyn Abbott