2019 has been a year filled with great stories for those who call Newfoundland and Labrador home. From artists to athletes, politicians, and more, there has been much to brag about on ‘The Rock.’ Yet the ones that touch our hearts the most are stories of perseverance, kindness and the will to overcome.
Each year The Newfoundland Herald is honoured to profile and spotlight remarkable and inspiring stories.
From organizations that go out of their way to help the less fortunate, to the unsung heroes of our community, to champions of body and spirit, The Newofundland Herald covered dozens of remarkable stories through the course of 2019.
Here are some of our reader favourites that touched and inspired us all in 2019! (Full articles available through the attached links)
The Autism Society of NL
The Autism Society of Newfoundland and Labrador has long been a safe-haven for those under the autism spectrum to feel included and supported within the community.
One of the latest initiatives of the Austin Society of Newfoundland and Labrador, their sow and grow program from the organizations’ Good Roots Gardening Initiative, aims to help those on the spectrum develop confidence and skills in the workforce, proving that labels cannot limit drive, determination and the will to succeed in life.
Team Broken Earth
Formed by Dr. Andrew Fuery as a way to give back on a global scale during times of crisis, Newfoundland based not-for-profit Team Broken Earth has impacted lives with aid and medical relief across the globe. This empowering and inspiring story sheds light on the people behind Team Broken Earth, who enter into regions in desperate need of a pick-me-up in an effort to make a difference not just with wallets, but with deeds.
The Dunne Family
Following a rare cancer diagnosis, the husband and wife team of Nicole and Chris Dunne aimed to make the most of a difficult situation, by raising funds and awareness for the condition through the inventive Colour to Conquer Campaign.
(Feb 17 – 23: Lost without Him)
Thirty-seven years after the tragic Ocean Ranger disaster, one widow shares her moving, inspiring and personal story of loss. Lost Without Him reflects on those left behind in the wake of the tragedy that claimed the lives of 84 souls
Transgender activist Taylor Stocks shares their story of battling a medical condition, while standing as a firm and strong advocate for LGBTQ rights. Stocks’ story inspires and educates, shedding light onto one of the unsung activist heroes on the island.
A Newfoundland born and bred single mother defies the odds, raising her beautiful daughter and balancing a full and prosperous career while becoming a champion in fitness and body building. This empowering story will make you want to go back to the gym!
Steve Coombs: Here & Now
Following a grim cancer diagnosis that he thankfully bested, comedian Steve Coombs decided to go back to the dance that brought him. Coombs took his real life pain turned elation and created Here & Now, a one-man show that combines comedy and sobering realities of living with, and conquering cancer. The funny-man peels back the curtain for a different side of the story, delving into family, PTSD associated with the diagnosis, and positively impacting other cancer survivors and victims.
Dr. Mike & Logan Hatcher
What began as a relaxing day at sea for Dr. Mike Hatcher and his son Logan quickly turned into an unbelievable and unthinkable nightmare. After being flung from his vessel, Dr. Hatcher found his arm mangled by the boat’s propeller. Were it not for the quick thinking of his eldest son and other crew members and passers by, the good doctor may not be with us today.This harrowing tale at sea is a remarkable test of courage and bravery and proof that we never truly fathom our own strength until it’s needed.
Ahead of the annual Shave For The Brave awareness campaign in 2019, Young Adult Cancer Canada’s Naomi-Lee Cheeke shared her story of battling and overcoming Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Sharing her story of perseverance, Cheeke proudly represented a cause that aims to give back to fellow youth cancer patients.
A story of what binds us and the warmth and love of a child that is all too rare in modern times. Battling a terminal brain tumour, young Leeland Hill selflessly used his Children’s Wish to visit his great-grandmother in Newfoundland and Labrador.
A family tragedy inspired young Newfoundlander and Labradorian Skye Hickey to get active, using a DIY attitude with tons of heart to give back with donations to Ronald MacDonald House, proving personal loss doesn’t impact our abilities to give back.