Then out of this doom and gloom emerges Prophetstown, Ill.
Residents there have seen their share of problems.
In June, eight of their historic downtown buildings burned in a massive fire that brought firefighters from more than 50 miles away and took 22 hours to contain. To add to emotional anguish to the financial pain, the fire was purposely set.
How that town reacted is where the story becomes uplifting. Three months after the fire and the town is still cleaning up the mess, yet residents took the time to put on a fundraiser for their department and those who answered the mutual-aid call.
It was their way of saying "thank you" to the firefighters.
"Thank you back to them big time," Gerald Armstrong, Prophetstown Assistant Fire Chief, told local TV news KWQC. "It's just unreal how these people come together."
But it gets better. The volunteer fire department is experiencing a spike in new enrollment. New recruits are up 13 percent, which is noteworthy given the nationwide difficulty finding new volunteers.
We are used to seeing this kind of rush to help in large tragedies that occupy headlines far outside their community, such as with Superstorm Sandy or the tornado in Joplin, Mo. But it's nice to see this side of human nature kick in for smaller events on a local scale.
What would be even nicer is if stories like this became more common than our usual daily fare.
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