After reading “How did fifth-graders spend a snow day? Being angels for sick classmate” by Erin Grace for the Omaha World-Herald and “All She Has, $150,000, Is Going to a University” by Rick Bragg for the New York Times, I realized how details of someone’s life can make a story. Everyone has a story, but as hard as it is to say it, not all of them are interesting. However, this is not the case with these stories.
Grace’s story is an obituary about Lauren, a girl who was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. Obituaries are usually about how the person that passed away lived; their accomplishments, wishes and how they spent their last days alive. However, this obituary is not like one of those. It shows how Lauren’s life changed that Dec. 12 that she got diagnosed with cancer and how it was after that. Grace wrote an obituary that is not completely sad; she shows that the bad times are not always bad; she showed how with the help of friends and family bad times can be good.
This was an interesting obituary; I have never read one like this before. I am never going to stop saying this, it is fascinating seeing how there are these rules on journalism that one is not supposed to break, and then out of nowhere someone breaks them. In this case, I think that some of the rules Grace broke were not for the better. Some of her sentences are short and, in my opinion, really bad. For example, one of the sentences is simply “Into the snow,” yikes. However, on other paragraphs, she showed with more depth how the people around Lauren felt and these were really good.
“It’s really fun to see her”
Rick Bragg’s story is a profile on Oseola McCarty, a washerwoman from Mississippi who donated $150,000 to the University of Southern Mississipi, to give the opportunity of education to those who do not have the funds. Yes, a lot of people donate to universities, but McCarty’s case was different. She was a woman who never got married, did not have kids and worked all her life. She lived in her family’s house, which means that she did not have to spend a lot of money on things. Oseola McCarty was a hardworking, humble and, from what I read, an inspiring woman.
I loved Bragg’s story. It is heartwarming to read about someone who worked all their life and decided to give their money to people who can use it to have a brighter future; she wanted to give someone else a gift that she never received, education. It is also sad and eye-opening to read about how many years ago black people could not attend to college because of their race, but as time passed and they got the opportunity to go to college, McCarty decided to help those who needed financial aid to go to school. She did not ask anyone if she could donate to their university; she decided to do it from her heart.
“No one approached her from the university; she approached us. She’s seen the poverty, the young people who have struggled, who need an education. She is the most unselfish individual I have ever met.”
I talked about two stories that are different, but in a way they are similar. It is interesting to see how stories can be about different things, but as long as they talk about someone who has an eye-catching story, they are compelling. Both Lauren and Oseola’s stories are moving and touching. Both Grace and Bragg, show how sharing the story of someone can make others think about their lives and the opportunities that they have that others do not. They show that if you look in the right place you will find someone with a story that will change the world.
Thank you for reading!