Stranded U.S. Marines Decided to Spend To Give Back To The Community They Are Trapped In

A ship full of U.S. Marines arrived in Montreal, in December. The ship was supposed to have a brief stop in Montreal after a tour of the Maritimes, before heading to Florida.

Before the ship was able to leave, it got stuck in thick ice caused by the cold winter in Montreal.

Since the Marines have been stranded in Montreal since December, some decided to step up and make the decision to volunteer at Montreal’s Welcome Hall Mission.

The Marines are helping by packaging food, stocking and working the check-out counters.

“We are so excited, because our volunteer engagements plummet the first three months of the year due to sickness and what not, so we are constantly in need of volunteers,” said Nancy Dossous, a coordinator at the Mission.

“I know in a few months from now these men are going to be chasing pirates in the Caribbean, literally, so it means a lot they are willing to sacrifice their time and do things like sort green onions,” she said.

The Welcome Hall Mission in Montreal has been in service for 125 years. They typically serve 3,000 meals each week to those in need.

The Marines were welcomed with opened arms and graciously thanked for their volunteering by the staff, as well as the people using the mission’s services.

Throughout their time stuck in Montreal, the 70 crew members have been on the ship doing daily training exercises.

It is amazing to see our Marines making the best out of a bad situation. To spend their extra time volunteering for a country that isn’t even their own is awesome. It shows they truly care about others and that is exactly the type of people I want representing my country. Way to go U.S. Marines.

Do You Know The Meaning Behind Your State’s Name?

The origin of your state’s name is one of those funny things you could live your whole life without learning.

All 50 of our country’s states have a unique story behind their monikers. You may be surprised to learn the meaning of yours.

The state takes its name from the American Indian tribes who lived along the Alabama River. The name is believed to combine the Choctaw words for “vegetation” and “picker,” so its literal meaning is “vegetation gatherers.”

This name was given to the Alaskan territory by the Russians. It’s taken from an Aleut Indian word, alaxsxaq, meaning “facing the sea” or “where the sea breaks.”

There are two disputed meanings behind the name Arizona:

It either comes from aritz ona, or “good oak” in Basque, since the state had many Basque settlers.

It could also mean aleh-zon, or “little spring,” from the native Papago Indian dialect.

Illinois Indian guides for European settlers called the state’s native Quawpaw Indian tribes Akansa, or “wind people.”

Pronunciation was up for debate until 1881, when the state legislature settled on “Ar-ken-saw” instead of “Ar-kan-sas.”

California was originally the name of a fictional island in the West Indies, from a Spanish novel Las Sergas de Esplandián by writer Garci Ordóñez de Montalvo. The magical island was said to be full of gold, so Spanish explorers were probably hopeful they would find some there.

California was mistaken for an island, and later a peninsula, until the 1700s.

Colorado is Spanish for red, and named for the color of the Colorado River, which carries red dirt.

Like other states, Connecticut is named after the river that bears its name. The word itself is from Quinnehtukqut, the Algonquian word for “beside the long tidal river.”

The state and the river that flows through it were both named for Thomas West, Baron of de la Warr. He was the original governor of the colony of Virginia.

Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon arrived off the coast of Florida just after Easter 1513. Florida is the name for the Easter season in Spanish, but it also means “flowery.”

The state is named after a colony founded there in the 1733, and named for the then-current King of England, George II.

Travelers At A Hotel Wake Up To A Beautiful Surprise Performance By Kentucky’s All-State Choir

Travelers at Hyatt Regency Louisville in Kentucky woke up to a performance that gave them goosebumps!

Facebook user Garrett Mager, from Germany, posted a video of the Kentucky All-State Choir singing the National Anthem. What’s amazing is that they sang the beloved anthem on every floor!

“I was sleeping in my room and then all of sudden I’m woken up by this racket and a bunch of kids,” Mager told Courier Journal. “I went outside on the balcony and asked them what they were doing and they said they were getting ready to sing the national anthem. So I watched and it was incredible.”

The choir also chose such a great place to perform. The large building has the perfect acoustics for a song as spectacular as the “Star Spangled Banner.” Listen for yourself!

Had a proud #American moment tonight. Woke up in my hotel hearing a lot of noise outside in the lobby. I went out and found this. The Kentucky State Choir Finals schools are all staying at my hotel. They decided to sing the National Anthem together on every single floor. #Amazing To use this video in a commercial player or in broadcasts, please email licensing@storyful.com

Posted by Garrett Mager on Wednesday, February 7, 2018

“Had a proud #American moment tonight. Woke up in my hotel hearing a lot of noise outside in the lobby. I went out and found this. The Kentucky State Choir Finals schools are all staying at my hotel. They decided to sing the National Anthem together on every single floor. #Amazing,” Mager wrote in the video’s caption.

“All credit goes to the kids to showcase their vocal abilities and skills,” Mager told reporters. “They’ve probably worked really hard all year to get to this point and to be recognized on this kind of level is remarkable.”

The video has more than 30 million views and 700,000 shares, but I think it deserves more!

Share this amazing choir’s performance with a friend!

Mirai Nagasu Makes USA Olympics History With Sensational Jump

The Olympics are always a time of national pride. People from every country come together in order to support their athletes as they attempt to find themselves on the podium.

Personally, my favorite events every Olympics are the figure skating programs. Whether it’s singles, doubles, ice dancing, or the team event, you’re guaranteed to be entertained by the emotional performances each skater delivers.

In 2010, the skating world was touched by the story of Joannie Rochette, a Canadian skater whose mother passed away just days before the final round of competition.

NY Daily News

Rochette won bronze in her program, and in that moment everyone was cheering for Canada.

At the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, skating is already underway, with the Team Figuring Skating competition already complete. Canada won gold, the Olympic Athletes of Russia won silver, and the United States won bronze. Each team had their incredible moments to shine, but the moment that broke history came at the hands (or feet, rather) of Mirai Nagasu, the American figure skater.

The 24-year-old skater competed as USA’s ladies free skate competitor and had teased that she had been “working on something” for the upcoming games.

That “something” left her in the history books.

Child Victims Of Team USA Doctor Confront Their Abuser In Court

Dr. Larry Nassar was working with the USA Gymnastics National Team medical staff since 1986, later becoming the National Team Physician. He has won awards throughout his career for his work, however, there was a dark secret looming behind it all.

In 2015, he was fired from the his position with USA Gymnastics “after learning of athlete concerns,” starting a series of events that revealed years of abuse and cover-ups.

A year later, current and former gymnasts who had previously worked with Nassar began coming forward to share stories of sexual harassment and assault. Since 2016, over 150 athletes have spoken up and their bravery has led to the justice system charging Nassar for his crimes.

Before he was taken away, some of his victims were able to share their impact statements.

South Carolina Wants To Honor Black Confederate Soldiers But Experts Disagree

The Civil War is a tricky subject in any part of the United States of America, a reminder of state sovereignty and the capability of mankind to betray and fight against their own brothers and sisters. We are where we are today because of the sacrifices of subjects who fought against injustices and demanded a better future for their families.

No matter if you are from the North or South of the country, you’ll agree that there is no place where the war is as hotly debated as South Carolina. The state played a prominent role in the war for the Confederate army, and now, lawmakers want to honor some of the members who they say have gone unrecognized for too long.

State representatives Bill Chumley and Mike Burns have created legislation that would establish a monument to black soldiers who served in the Confederate Army. They both previously voted against removing the Confederate flag from the State House in 2015, until it was taken down after a white supremacist shot nine members of a Charleston church to death.

Their efforts are borne out of a desire to see the loyal contributions of soldiers recognized for their willingness to lay down their lives in support of the Confederacy.

“While there is representation of those African-Americans from South Carolina who took up arms for the Union, there is nothing to show the contributions, sacrifices and honor of their Confederate counterparts,” the bill states.

However, many individuals have stepped up to criticize this move. In particular is Walter Edgar, who served as director of the University of South Carolina’s Institute for Southern Studies for 32 years, and has even authored a book on the history of the state.

“In all my years of research, I can say I have seen no documentation of black South Carolina soldiers fighting for the Confederacy,” he says. “In fact, when secession came, the state turned down free (blacks) who wanted to volunteer because they didn’t want armed persons of color.”

The facts seem to support this claim. Records from the South Carolina Department of History and Archives offer no evidence that any African-Americans ever received payment for fighting on the Confederate side.

But what it does mention is a relatively unknown tidbit that Chumley and Burns intend to utilize in order to pass their legislation.

Newly Found Ancient DNA In The U.S. Rewrites American History

When most Americans today think about American history, they first think of the time Europeans first arrived in the land of the Americas.

The recently-found DNA of a six-week-old Native American infant who died thousands of years ago has rewritten the history of “The Land of The Free,” and shed more light onto how it came to be.

Names like Leif Erikson and Christopher Columbus, who are some of the first European men to set foot in North America, are usually the first names that come to mind.

Erikson, a Norse explorer from Iceland, is believed to have arrived in North America in the year 1001, and Christopher Columbus didn’t reach the New World until 500 years later, in 1492.  

But it wasn’t until a huge chunk of North America declared their independence as “the United States of America” in 1776 that people really started to think about American history.  

The original American flag, known as the Betsy Ross flag. Historyplex

We all know there were people long before that, because where else would Hollywood get the idea for the feud between the American pioneers and American Indians.

It’s widely accepted that early settlers crossed from Russia into Alaska through the Bering Strait at the end of the last Ice Age.

But the question that’s always remained was how many different groups came to America, when did they arrive, and what happened for those thousands of years before Europeans settled in the New World?

According to the Daily Mail, this is the first time direct genetic traces of the earliest Native Americans have been identified.

Is Your Hometown In The Top 5 Best Or Worst Cities To Get A Cup Of Coffee?

Who doesn’t love a cup of Joe to wake them up in the morning? Whether it’s before you head into work, drop the kids off at school, or just to feel more awake and lively, coffee has always been your “get it done” friend.

Coffee has been a staple in the American diet since the Boston Tea Party of 1773, when patriots to our nation threw the imported leaves into the harbor. Ever since then, Americans have been drinking that delicious brew and staying hard at work.

But it appears that some states love this hot beverage way more than others, and many would be surprised to see how hard, or how easy, it is for their fellow citizens to get access to the real magic beans.

Take a look and see how your region ranks from worst to best!

Laredo, Texas

Bigger doesn’t always mean better in this case.

Toledo, Ohio

Imgur

Why does Ohio have to be terrible at everything?

Greensboro, North Carolina

If it ain’t sweet tea, they do not want it. Maybe South Carolina can do a better job…

North Las Vegas, Nevada

Not Pictured: Good coffee.

Memphis, Tennessee

Okay, we may have an objection to raise here.

Are you ready to see the best places in America to get your cup of java?

Meghan Markle Is Breaking Royal Tradition In More Ways Than One

The world is officially gushing over the latest royal engagement, and a lot of it has to do with the bride-to-be, Meghan Markle. A proud feminist, an American, and a celebrity in her own right, she brings a new face to the monarchy that suits Prince Harry and his youthful intricacies.

But there are some things about this couple that are breaking new ground in the way that the royals handle things.

ABC News

Clearly, Meghan is not the same as princesses past, but this minor difference has been seized upon by both contrarians and supporters to the engaged couple.

Growing up in the working class is the polar opposite of what the British royal family  could ever imagine. Meghan’s father was a lighting director, and her mother a social support worker and yoga instructor.

Meghan worked her way into show business and has now reached amazing heights, but it is definitely not the typical royal story.

Drawings By Presidents Trump and Kennedy Are Expected To Sell For Thousands, And You’ll Wonder Why

The leaders of the free world are known for their strength, diligence, charisma, and their intellectual capacity. However, their artistic ability is rarely spoken about.

That may change fairly soon, as an art auction show will be featuring pieces from both of the these presidents alongside one another. Their original pieces will be displayed and sold at Heritage Auctions’ Americana & Political Memorabilia auction.

The first comes from President Trump, however it was created before he was elected to the Oval Office. Trump donated the piece to a charity in 2005, and though it is merely a doodle, it is expected to fetch at least $15,000 at the event. It actually looks quite good.

The piece was drawn over a decade ago and featured the New York City skyline alongside the Hudson river, complete with the city’s iconic yellow cabs, pedestrians, and even some trees in a tender reflection of the city he was born in.

However, it is believed that even with the high estimated value, the work of former president John F. Kennedy will sell for many times more than the amount Trump’s piece will get.

These Are The Most Popular Books From The States They Were Based In

They always say “Write what you know”, so it’s no wonder that some of America’s best writers came up with their most successful works after setting them in places they spent a long time in.

Here are the most popular books from six states that have been immortalized in the written word!

This is the classic story of a young boy growing up along the Mississippi River and all the mishaps that happen along the way. It has become a staple of schools everywhere in the world for showing us the difficult lives of a different time in America, with a humorous perspective!

This now iconic story of a mysterious man who refused to give up on his lifelong desire while mixing with New York socialites serves as a cautionary portrayal of the American Dream. It was the most successful work that author, F. Scott Fitzgerald, ever released. It came at a time of economic and political upheaval, perfectly capturing the essence of the country’s transformation.