Love for USU
Right off at the beginning of the year USU Biology professor Randy Lewis got national attention for pioneering what is called 'bulletproof skin.' CNN did a whole story on it and you can catch the whole interview here.
How cool is this? Well, with nothing more than the skin they engineered, they stopped a bullet fired at a low speed from a .22 cal. Who knows what applications this could have in the future!
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
While this wasn't a huge national attention bringing game is was a HUGE deal for the USU Aggies football. I was proud of our team for fighting hard through injury and discouragement. It was said "no team in the nation has been more snakebitten this season than the Aggies when it comes to blowing a lead in the final minutes of a game and ending up with a loss." That quote was all too fitting for the final game of the season. Even though we lost in a heartbreak, it was definitely a huge accomplishment for the team and next year is looking even better. True to his word, however, coach Anderson got a USU tattoo because of the hard work of the team.
Life and death situations
This was without question the biggest news story to come out of Logan this year, for good reason. If I told you that a burning car was on top of a limp body and several onlookers ran up to it, without hesitating, and began to lift it off of the body and pull the victim out from under it, you might believe me and you would say wow. Here's the kicker: THE ENTIRE THING WAS CAUGHT ON TAPE. I know of nothing else that stirs emotion as powerfully and effectively as video. With millions of people able to feel like they were there, and experience the emotions involved every second of the way was one of the main reasons this was such a big story. People all over the US and even other parts of the world were buzzing about this because the video stirs so much emotion.
I honestly can't think of a single national news agency that didn't pick this story up. The heroes were all flown out and given the pampered treatment as they went on the Ellen show. I had the crazy opportunity of working with Inside Edition to capture some footage, interview some people, and track down some of the heroes/witnesses. Long story short, it was an awesome experience and an incredibly stressful 2 hours but I learned that I never want to be associated with the press ever again. Way too much stress and you have to be extremely pushy and nosy. Not my style.
Brandon Wright, the victim, is miraculously alive and well today.
Car in Logan canyon river
If pulling a limp body out from under a burning car wasn't enough to convince you that Cache Valley is home to some of the most selfless and courageous people on earth, this one ought to put the icing on the cake.
If you don't remember what happend, 3 children had to be rescued from a car that slid off the road in Logan canyon into the river in the dead of winter. Some passersby took action and saved the kids from the car. Once this hit national news for the heroism of the people involved Ellen got involved, yet again, and brought them onto her show. Here's a couple articles on they whole ordeal from USA Today and CNN.
Passersby rescue kids in icy river crash
Onlookers pull 3 children from car in frigid Utah river
Taylor Sawyer: Texting and driving
Sadly, not all of the stories this year ended happily. USU student Taylor Sawyer was killed in a car crash as a result of texting and driving. Her story has circled around the nation as an example of what can really happen if you allow yourself to be distracted for even a few seconds at the wheel. Her parents have used this tragedy as a boost to get the message of the dangers of texting and driving out. They are trying hard to make a law that would make it illegal.
Parents of Caldwell teen killed while texting, driving appear on Today Show
Why men and women can't be friends: Jesse Budd and Patrick Romero
If your video makes it to the front page of the internet, it's probably pretty good. Jesse and Patrick set out to make nothing more than a video for a class project and stumbled upon a gold mine. Bringing to light such a controversial truth about relationships between men and women was the perfect thing to appeal to literally the entire world. Everyone can relate to this video. It's funny because every guy has experienced this all too much and every girl, after watching, realized their flaw in standards and had to share it with other girls because it was true. There are thousands of memes on Pinterest that deal with the fact that girls completely understand that they do confusing things to guys but don't care. For some reason when they're all together they love to share how ridiculously confusing they are and laugh with each other. This video hit just the right vein on men and women, hit the front page of Reddit and went straight VIRAL.
The real meaning of MPH
Everyone thought it was enough to have one viral video representing USU for the year. Who would have thought that we would have two, and that the second would be almost more far reaching than the first?! That's exactly what happened. Travis Chambers filmed a segment where he asked his wife how far you travel in an hour if you are going 80 miles per hour. She put together some elaborate math equation and Travis thought it was funny. Not realizing what would happen just three months later they posted it to YouTube to show their family. Somehow, it got passed around and enough influential people found it and shared it. Before Travis knew it, it had gone viral and there was nothing he could do about it. The controversy came because of the fact that everyone thought he was a horrible person for making fun of his wife like that.
This is the best explanation of the entire ordeal I've seen from the mouth of Travis himself: Ever Wonder Where Viral Videos Come From?
After being on GMA and Tosh.0, apparently they are at total celeb status because they turned down an invitation to go on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. The real reason was actually quite ironic; Chelsea has a math test :)
Proof, however, that Travis is really a good guy is right here in this tweet. I'm sure it was a rough time for their marriage but I saw them just yesterday and it seems like everything is as good as ever. I think they should make a video called the The Real Meaning of Marriage and help stop the divorce epidemic in this country because apparently they understand the real meaning of it...
All in all it has been one hell of a year at USU. With as much that has happened this year, I'm all the more excited to get to spend one more year up here. Who knows what's in store for next year!