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One Republic was joined by a very special guest to pay tribute to Chris Cornell and Chester Bennington.

Toni Cornell, the 12-year-old daughter of late singer Chris Cornell joined the band OneRepublic onstage live on “Good Morning America” today, where they performed a moving tribute of the Leonard Cohen song “Hallelujah.” The performance was a celebration of the lives of Cornell and late Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington, both of whom died earlier this year within months of each other.... [Read Full Story]

The Sarah Diaries: All Because of Chocolate Cake

55 years ago a young man and woman sat in the backseat of a friends car, driving to a picnic lunch in Oklahoma. The couple in the front seat married, the two in the back, complete strangers. Both women in the car were best friends in high school. The two guys, both enlisted in the Air Force and became friends. The only reason the young man in the back even joined the other 3 on this outing was because as he calls it “some of the best chocolate cake I’ve ever had.”
Those two strangers, were my parents.
53 years ago, the two stood in what was my grandparents front lawn and is now my home, and exchanged wedding vows. It was a small wedding, filled with family and close friends from both sides.
Due to distance, most of their “dating” was done via handwritten letters, mailed back and forth. My mom still has a stack of the ones my dad wrote her. After his time in the Air Force, he moved from his home in Iowa to Michigan, began working at Whirlpool, and once us kids came along became the Coach of just about everything. My mom working at a local beauty salon, until she took over the farm. Both of them working hand in hand with my grandparents on the farm after hours, sorting produce, loading trucks for the market, and even working the different ones occasionally.
I remember being younger and asking them about how they met, and my dad telling the story of that car ride all those years ago. It was another hot day, and here these two strangers were sitting in the back seat of a car, she holding the now famous chocolate cake, when it starts to slide all over. Heat + cake + frosting = bad. They were able to save the cake, but had many laughs along the way.
When I asked how they knew this would turn out to be something special, they both shrugged their shoulders. My dad chiming in with “Well I figured she couldn’t be that bad.”
55 year total, 53 years married, 4 kids (took them 3 previous tries to get it right on the 4th! HAHA!), and countless memories.
Happy Anniversary, Mom & Dad!
... [Read Full Story]

Channel 16 is coming to Benton Harbor tomorrow for their annual Pack-a-Backpack!

The school ads have already began running on television and it won’t be long before the kids are heading back to school.  Help our reporting partners at WNDU ensure that as many kids return to school with the supplies that they need by making a donation to pack-a-backpack.  Click on the link below for supplies needed and even information on how your company can help out.... [Read Full Story]

The Sarah Diaries: You DO Matter

Warning – we are about to get deep…
I found myself reminiscing last night, listening to a mix of all of Linkin Park’s albums. The very songs and lyrics that I once cranked up in hopes of tuning out life and the voices of negativity in my own head. The very lyrics that I can remember relating too on different levels, from a man who was open about his troubled life. The only difference now was this man, Chester Bennington, was now gone.
After Chris Cornell’s death many people spoke out saying his voice, his lyrics, his songs helped them through such a large portion of their life. For me, the last 17 years Linkin Park has been one of my many go to bands to get by.
Knowing these two men were such good friends, watching and hearing the pain of loss in Linkin Park’s performance of “One More Light” a few days after Chris’ death on Jimmy Kimmel, you could see and hear the pain in every word. I stumbled across a video of Linkin Park and Chris Cornell performing “Crawling” as song that is openly about how Chester felt while under the influence of drugs. It was heartbreaking to watch two men that so many looked up to, listened to, admired, and left us under such heart wrenching circumstance.
Much like cancer, suicide has touched many of us. Personally, I have watched the aftermath of loss in this form multiple times. High School to adulthood, I’ve cried, comforted, and tried piecing together a justifiable explanation as to why.
I’ve also been on the other side. I’d be lying if I said the darkness that is depression and suicidal thoughts isn’t terrifying, because it is. For different people the triggers are a range of things from chemical imbalances, to drugs and addiction, to not being able to process grief, past sexual abuse, and more. For me, it was a combination of things.
And… here’s where I get even more honest with you – something that my family doesn’t even know… I’ve actually tried twice. The first time I was in High School and most recently was the day before my 30th birthday. I am thankful I was unsuccessful both times, but I’d be lying if I told you that at those very moments it was the only option I could see.
So why am I telling you this? Because many people see me and think I have this perfect life, or am on my way to a perfect semi charmed life… but I’ve still been down in the darkness. It also means others have and are there currently. It might feel like you don’t matter, like no one cares – but that’s not true.
You will never know the impact YOU have had on others, but you HAVE.
You DO matter.
Someone DOES care.
Someone does NEED you.
Reach out and talk to someone, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is open and available 24/7. 800-273-TALK (8255).
I don’t know why I’m still here, or what the plan is for me, but every day I am thankful that I am.
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The Sarah Diaries: Case Of The Space Invader

Being the good daughter that I am, Saturday’s in May and June are devoted to the Farmers Market. Thankfully we only have to travel to South Bend, and not Chicago, but that 3am wake up is still rough!
Minus my mom to terrifying me when she fell off the back of our box truck and landed hard on the ground, it’s been a pretty standard run. Thankfully she’s ok, but wow, pretty positive she gave me a few silver hairs!
If you’ve read some of by blogs, you know I’m working on bettering myself health wise and finding Mr. Right. Well, personally, I’ve also made it no big secret that I want to be a mom someday. A couple of years ago I made up my mind that if in the 5 years I’m still rocking this single status, I’m going to move forward with having kids on my own. Not how I wanted to do it, but maybe that’s God’s plan all along?
This all leads me to my last day at the market – in the words of Sophia from Golden Girls – picture it, South Bend, I’m selling plants to the people. My moms friend steps up to me in our booth, pinches my cheek, neck, arm, stomach, and hip and proceeds to exclaim how she can see I’ve lost weight but I still have a way to go. Followed by “Knocked up yet?”
Excuse me?! What just happened? Someone entered my space, pinched me multiple times, gave me a back-handed compliment, and asked me, what?!
I wasn’t sure how to respond, so I just walked away. Here I am, in a VERY a public place, she’s in her upper 70’s, and I’m both shocked and can feel my face/neck/chest turning red with anger. After calming down, I had to walk past her again, to which she leans over to me and says “You don’t need a man, adopt or go pick one out at a bank.” Right… something tells me it’s not that easy.
My mother assures me, she meant no harm, but I’m pretty positive there are rules or codes of conduct on things you just don’t do. All of the above being one of them.
Almost a month later, and I can laugh about it. Mainly I’m just thankful I wont have the pleasure of seeing her again any time soon.
... [Read Full Story]