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Saturday, May 6, 2017

Short story collection 4


##Lost in the rainforest

 On the Christmas Eve of 1971, 17- year old Juliane Köpcke and her mother took a flight to Peru to see her father, a famous zoologist working in the rainforest there. The airline they used, LANSA, had a bad reputation, but they desperately wanted to spend Christmas with Juliane's father.
 At first, everything went smoothly. 25 minutes into the flight, however, the plane flew into some dense, dark clouds and suddenly started to shake. Then, Juliane and her mother saw a bright flash of light to their right and felt the plane suddenly tilt forward into a nosedive. The frightened passengers started screaming as their Christmas presents and other items were flying around chaotically in the plane. After a few terrifying moments, the airplane exploded and fell apart in midair. Juliane was thrown out of the plane by the force of the explosion. She felt herself spinning around in the air and lost consciousness.
 When Juliane came to, she found herself in the middle of the dense rainforest, still strapped into her seat. Her right eye was swollen shut, her collarbone was broken and her body was covered in bruises and cuts. Her mother was nowhere to be found. She was completely alone, the only survivor amidst the wreckage.
 Fortunately, Juliane remembered the advice her father had given her on surviving in the wilderness. He had advised her to follow water downstream to find civilization. Luckily, she found a stream of water nearby and started walking downstream.
 She trekked through the knee-deep water, battling exhaustion, sleep deprivation and starvation. A fly laid eggs into her wounds, which then became infested with maggots. Sometimes she saw a crocodile, but thanks to what her father had taught her, she knew not to fear them as they rarely attack humans.
 After an incredible 9 days without sleep, food and shelter, she finally reached a small cabin. She sat down and waited for the owners to come. A couple hours later, the lumbermen staying there returned and got her back to safety. She later found out that her mother had died alongside all the other 92 passengers and crew on the flight. Juliane now works as a librarian in Germany and lives a calm life.


##A great team player, despite his autism

 Jason McElwain didn't talk until he was 5. He was diagnosed as having high functioning autism. Since then, his biggest passion and hobby has been basketball. Considered too small to be on the high school team, he started working as the team manager instead. He was satisfied with his job and was good at it, but his dream was always to play in the team.
 For his very last home game, the coach decided to let him wear the team suit so he could feel like a part of the team. At the end of the game, with only 4 minutes left to play, the coach surprised everybody by calling him onto the court to play in the game! His first 2 shots failed. But for his third, he threw a three pointer at 20 feet. And that was just the beginning.
 He went on to throw 5 more three pointers. At the buzzer, Jason's teammates took him onto their shoulders as the amazed audience gathered around him. In just 4 minutes, he went from a kid with a dream of playing in the team to a hero and a sports celebrity. His inspiring story made the news and in 2006 he won an ESPY award for Best Moment of Sports. Jason also wrote a book about his inspirational story, titled "The Game of My Life".

##They said he'd never walk again

 Dan Cummings was only 19 years old when his life changed forever. He broke his neck in an accident that left him paralyzed from the chest down. The doctors diagnosed him as quadriplegic and told him that he would never be able to walk again. Instead of accepting their opinion as truth, he was determined to beat the odds and regain his ability to walk.
 He went to physical therapy for 3 years without any remarkable progress. His insurance refused to pay for more. But he refused to give up. He moved to California so he could take part in a much more intensive rehabilitation program called Project Walk, which uses innovative therapies to help patients with spinal cord injuries regain and improve motor skills. After 4 years of hard work, he proved the doctors wrong- with the help of a walker, he could walk again.
 He decided to dedicate his life towards helping others who have also suffered spinal cord injuries. He founded a physical rehabilitation center called Journey Forward to support other patients with spinal cord injuries. And then, 10 years after he got injured, he managed to walk a mile in support of the center, raising $75 000 for the organization. This was all made possible by his remarkable drive and determination to never give up.



I am a boy of 15. We used to live in Chilsotoon, which used to be a battlefield. Since I did not have a job, I always went to the mountains near our house to collect scrap metal which I could sell for 5,000 Afs. per 7 kilograms.
On 2 March, I and my friend, Edris, went to collect scrap metal though my parents had often warned me of the dangers of this business. I reassured them that I would not touch dangerous things.
On that day we saw two dead bodies at the foot of the mountain. “Let’s take them out of that spot,” I suggested. But my friend said that we might step on a mine if we go there, so we didn’t. As we made our way back home, we stuck to the trail because I did not have shoes. Edris was telling me stories. He was an orphan and he was telling me how his father died. Suddenly, I heard a great explosion. It was a mine and Edris had stepped on it. We both fell to the ground and I was injured on my left side.
I started shouting for Edris and I heard him speaking faintly and painfully. He said he had lost both legs. When I shouted for him a second time, I did not hear anything in response. I understood that Edris was dead. I started screaming and after a long time I saw my brother coming up with some deminers who were working near the area. They took me to the ICRC hospital.”

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