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Mother says 11-year-old son died mimicking prank YouTube video

A Georgia mother says her son mimicked a “hang myself” prank video on YouTube and accidentally killed himself.

Cantenecia Stokes of East Point said she was horrified to see her 11-year-old son hanging from a rope in his bedroom closet last Saturday morning.

“I lost my baby because of something he didn’t know really completely about,” Stokes said.

She told WSB-TV’s Matt Johnson that Aundreis Bass accidentally hanged himself after watching prank videos about hanging on YouTube.

That's what his three younger siblings told her as they watched him hang himself while their mother was making them breakfast.

Stokes said they told her he wasn't breathing, and she ran to cut him down and call 911.

>> Read more trending stories

“I got a (breath) and that was it, and I panicked because I still wasn’t getting a response,” Stokes said.

She says her first-born child had every reason to live.

He loved drawing, listening to music and basketball.

She later found out he didn't want to follow through with what he had done.

“He panicked and he was trying to take himself out, and he didn’t know if you pull you're only worsening, it's tightening,” Stokes said.

He was pronounced dead four days later at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston.

Now Stokes says she is not letting her other children use the internet unsupervised.

“It's gotten to the point where it's taking away our kids,” Stokes said.

She wants other parents to know about the type of disturbing videos that their children may be watching.

“I just don’t want nobody else to have to suffer what I went through,” Stokes said.

Children get their intelligence from their mothers, report says

A new report said we may get most of our smarts from our mothers.

>> Read more trending stories  

The report, documented by Jennifer Delgado, of the blog Psychology Spot, said that recent studies have pointed to intelligence in children coming from the mother rather than the father. According to Delgado, the basis of the thesis comes from "conditioned genes," or ones that "behave differently depending on their origin," which work "only if they come from the mother."

Delgado said that about half of one's intelligence is hereditary and that the best predictor of intelligence was the IQ of the child's mother. She cited studies she said were conducted by the University of Ulm, Germany, and the University of Cambridge, and identified a study that found that "the ratio of young people's intelligence varied only an average of 15 points from that of their mothers."

The report also cites a study conducted by the University of Minnesota that found that "children who have developed a strong attachment with their mothers develop a capacity of playing complex symbolic games at the age of two, are most persevering, and show less frustration during the troubleshooting."

Delgado's report is unconfirmed.

Read more at Psychology Spot.

'Sit With Us' app finds lunch buddies for lonely children

A new app created by a 16-year-old California girl aims to make sure no child eats his or her school lunch alone.

>> Read more trending stories  

Natalie Hampton developed the idea for the Sit With Us app, which launched Sept. 9, to help students find kindness and welcoming groups with whom to eat in school lunchrooms across the country.

"Lunch might seem really small, but I think these are the small steps that make a school more inclusive," Hampton told the Washington Post. "It doesn't seem like you're asking that much, but once you get people in the mindset, it starts to change the way students think about each other. It makes a huge difference in how they treat each other."

The now-high school junior told the Los Angeles Daily News that she was inspired to create the app after she ate lunch alone for her entire seventh-grade school year. She said the experience made her feel lonely and vulnerable and made her a target for bullying, which lasted into her eight-grade year.

Hampton told the Daily News that she suffered from nightmares, stress and depression as a result of the bullying, and at one point, she was hospitalized for health issues.

>>Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news  

"I was a shell of the person I was. When I walked into a classroom, I was planning an escape route," Hampton said.

The app allows students to connect with other students at their schools, chat with other users to coordinate a lunch, post featured lunches for others to join and search for lunches nearby.

Users create a profile, add friends and describe their interests. Users have the option to designate themselves as "ambassadors" who create "open lunch" events and invite others to join them. The open lunch events serve as go-aheads for all interested students to join the ambassadors' table.

"Sit With Us was born because I am committed to making sure that other kids don't suffer as I did. I believe that seemingly small, incremental changes in the overall dynamic of a school community can bring about change, so that everyone feels welcome and included, " Hampton wrote on the app's official website. "I believe that every school has upstanders like me, who are happy and willing to invite anyone to join the lunch table. It is my hope, with people pledging to be ambassadors at their schools, that no one will feel left out."

Hampton said the new app is especially helpful because the electronic process prevents children from being publicly rejected and being considered social outcasts by their peers. 

"This way it's very private. It's through the phone. No one else has to know," Hampton told Audie Cornish on NPR's "All Things Considered." "And you know that you're not going to be rejected once you get to the table."

The Sit With Us app is free and recommended for children of middle school age and older.

Boy with brain cancer gets wish, becomes boss of John Deere for a day

A dream became reality for a 4-year-old farmer-in-training with brain cancer.

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>> Watch the news report from KWWL

According to KWWL, Aiden Remme of Brewster, Minnesota, has been fighting a brain tumor since his diagnosis earlier this year. Despite undergoing chemotherapy, Aiden's tumor has grown. 

The news was hard for Aiden.

"One of his big things he was worried about was that he wasn't going to be able to combine with his papa," his mother, Tracy Remme, told KWWL. "He loves farming."

>> Read more trending stories

Touched by Aiden's story, staffers at John Deere invited Aiden to Waterloo, Iowa, to become boss of the manufacturing company for a day.

Aiden even got to wear "a special hat that said 'the boss' and a little ID that said his name on it," Tracy Remme said. "He was pretty excited."

Read more here.

>> See a photo from Aiden's visit 

Mother fights gender stereotypes with a line of suits for girls

Gabi Yulo was just a toddler when she announced that she wanted a “tornado,” her mother, Michele Yulo said. That was three-year-old speak for a tuxedo. Gabi also had a love of ties and bow ties and often wore them around her neck paired with a t-shirt.

Michele Yulo, 51, searched all over for a suit that would fit her daughter, but came up empty-handed. She eventually hit the boy’s department to purchase a tuxedo. Gabi wore it to her violin recital with a pair of Michael Jordan high-tops and her hair pulled back in a ponytail.

>> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news

Yulo realized her daughter, now an 11-year-old middle schooler, just wasn’t a princess and pink loving type of girl.

“She is gender non-conforming,” Yulo said. “She has never ascribed to princess culture or girly, ultra feminine things. But I tell her, it doesn’t make her less of a girl.”

When Gabi was younger, she was confused about her choices. “She didn’t see a lot of options and didn’t see a lot of girls like her at the time,” Yulo said.

When Gabi was in pre-K she preferred playing with the firetrucks rather than in the play-kitchen. When she was six, she got a buzz cut. “I had to say to her I’m okay with it but you are going to walk out the door and people are going to say things,” said Yulo.

Yulo decided she would do something to help her daughter and all the other girls who wanted something different from what society was offering.

In 2008, Yulo sold her wedding ring and created Princess Free Zone, a website, blog and brand that makes gender neutral t-shirts with designs such as a dinosaur on a scooter or an octopus with a mustache. But what Yulo really wanted was to create a line of suits with separates that girls could mix and match to get the look they want. The clothing would be sized for girls’ bodies and would prevent girls from ever again having to shop for ill-fitting suits in the boy’s department.

Her first effort at fundraising came up short, but Yulo thinks the time is right to try again.

There has been a lot of attention devoted to creating gender-neutrality among children from the gender-free toy aisles at Target to ED by Ellen, a line of gender-neutral clothing that Ellen DeGeneres created for the Gap.

Related: Target to launch gender-neutral bedding line for kids

Yulo noted one moment in particular that seemed to change the landscape — a 2011 image featuring J.Crew president and creative director Jenna Lyons’ holding her son, Beckett’s toes, which were painted with his favorite hot pink Essie nail polish.

Yulo now has a campaign on Indiegogo with which she hopes to raise $22,000 for prototyping and clothing samples that can be photographed on actual models.

“I don’t want to give up,” said Yulo. “The idea is to open up those options to reflect that not all girls like dresses.”

Yulo is working with a designer and manufacturer in New York who have helped her create plans for three different suit styles — a casual suit, a dressier style and a tuxedo — for girls ages 5 through 12. For each suit style, there will be skirt, short and pant options to pair with the jackets. Yulo has also planned a collection of ties. Long-term, she hopes to add cargo pants and button down shirts to the mix.

Though it is early to have an exact retail price, Yulo said she would like the suits to be in the range of $125 total for the top and bottom.

“I want this to be very high quality,” she said. “I want to be sure they are how I want them to look and feel. I don’t want them to be cheap or to fall apart after a couple of wears.”

It is a big endeavor for a working mom who has not had previous experience in manufacturing, but Yulo is hopeful that the project will resonate with other moms who have had a similar experience.

“It is adorable when you are five or six, but when you are 12, it is no longer cute for girls to be in boys clothes,” she said. “I have seen my daughter struggle with this and I know there are plenty of kids out there who would love to try something different. I feel like kids shouldn’t be pigeonholed by what they wear.”

Barbie really does make girls want to be thin, study finds

Many have suspected that the body shape of dolls can impact what girls think of their own bodies.

Now, new research in the September issue of Body Image – an international, peer-reviewed journal that publishes scientific articles on body image and human physical appearance – confirms what they've always believed to be true.

The study, conducted among 6- to 8-year-old girls, revealed that girls who played with thin dolls desired thinner body shapes even after just a few minutes of playtime.

When girls played with full-figured dolls, it suppressed their desire for thin body shapes.

One group of 112 girls was randomly exposed to one of four conditions — thin Barbie dolls (not the new ones introduced earlier this year) or full-figured Tracy dolls dressed in a swimsuit or modest clothing.

>> Read more trending stories

A second group of 112 girls was exposed to one of four conditions containing unfamiliar dolls of different body size (thin versus full-figured) and in different types of dress (modest versus swimsuit).

“Girls who played with full-figured dolls showed less body dissatisfaction after doll exposure compared to girls who played with thin dolls. Playing with unrealistically thin dolls may encourage motivation for a thinner shape in young girls,” according to the study's abstract.

Mattel, the makers of Barbie dolls, already discovered the wisdom in making dolls with more realistic body types. In January, the company released Barbie dolls with three new body types: petite, curvy and tall.

The new study comes at a time when body image is top of mind.

During New York Fashion Week, which runs through Sept. 15, fashion expert Tim Gunn criticized the American fashion industry for turning its back on plus-size women.

Designer Christian Siriano was one of the few designers to send plus-size fashions down the runway during fashion week.

Siriano — who has recently signed on to design a second collection for specialty-size retailer Lane Bryant — cast five models size 12 and up in his show and subsequently earned kudos for having the most diverse runway of the season.

Sailor gives birth on carrier in Persian Gulf

A Navy ship had a stowaway of sorts on Sunday.

A sailor checked into the medical clinic of the Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier suffering from stomach pains, the Navy Times reported.

It turns out that she was pregnant and didn't know it. 

>> Read more trending stories  

Hours later, Navy medical staff delivered a healthy 7-pound baby girl in the middle of the Persian Gulf.

Mother and baby are doing well, a Navy spokesperson said.

And since the closest Babies R Us is thousands of miles from the ship, the Eisenhower had to fly in diapers, formula and an incubator to help care for the baby, the Navy Times reported.

Sailors who find out they're expecting would not deploy or would leave an operational command once they hit 20 weeks.

Students rally behind deaf teen whose backpack was stuffed in toilet by bullies

High school students in Omaha, Nebraska, are rallying behind a deaf classmate after he was the target of bullies.

<iframe width="390" height="219" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_xUroKjNtfY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

>> Watch the video from Newsy

Earlier this month, students at Burke High School shoved Alex Hernandez's backpack into a toilet during lunch.

"It's not OK to bully someone who is disabled, deaf or hard of hearing," Hernandez, who's been deaf since he was 1 year old, told Newsy's partners at KMTV. 

According to KMTV, Hernandez left his backpack on a chair in the school cafeteria while getting some food. And when he returned, the backpack was gone.

Hernandez immediately told school administrators about the missing bag, and they found surveillance footage that showed two male students walking off with it.

Another student later found Hernandez's belongings stuffed in a school toilet.

>> Read more trending stories

The backpack contained some valuable items, including a battery for his cochlear implant, his debit card, school supplies and his English project.

"I was very upset because I know I work really hard on my project and homework because I just want to make my mom to be happy and know that I did a good job on the homework," Hernandez said.

Other students said they are outraged by the incident. 

"It just absolutely sickened me," Burke High School student Devon Fuller said.

Some of Hernandez's friends even set up a GoFundMe page to raise money to replace his ruined belongings. They raised more than $800 in just three days.

“Due to the increase and high donations, we decided to stop the fundraiser,” a student who helped organize the fundraiser tweeted. “We raised enough money for the student to replace his school supplies!”

Hernandez, who has said he wants to transfer schools, said he was grateful for the support.

"I wanted to thank all of my friends and those who wrote me for supporting me," he told KMTV. "I am very happy. It made me feel like I am not alone."

Hernandez says he wants to talk to the two students responsible and their families about doing the right thing. School officials investigating the incident issued a statement saying that the students involved "targeted an unattended backpack versus an individual student."

>> See the Facebook post here

So today at school my brother was bullied super hard at his high school. Some kids stole his back pack from the lunch...Posted by Analy Luevano on Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Man soothes son of pregnant passenger during flight

When a man saw a pregnant woman trying to calm down her young son who was becoming upset on a flight from Minneapolis to Atlanta this week, he offered a helping hand.

Passenger Andrea Byrd captured the heartwarming gesture in a photo, which has gone viral after she posted it on Facebook.

>> Read more trending stories

The man, who said he was a father himself, offered to walk the boy up and down the plane’s aisle so that the mother could get some rest. Byrd took a photo of the man holding the child as he walked down the aisle. Byrd said the man continued to walk the aisle with the child for most of the flight.

The Facebook post has been shared over 100,000 times. Byrd said the man’s actions “showed me today that there are still good people out there in a world full of turmoil.”

...on my flight back to Georgia I saw this man, who was a stranger to this woman, offer to help her because she was...Posted by Andrea Byrd on Monday, September 5, 2016

Bank allows parents to bring infants to work — every day

Many working mothers are forced to drop their infants off at day care. But a California bank offers a unique employee benefit: After taking maternity or paternity leave, new parents are encouraged to bring their infants to the office every day until they turn 6 months old or start to crawl.

>> Read more trending stories 

Alyssa Palomino works at a Schools Financial Credit Union in Roseville. She went back to work Tuesday with her 8-week-old twins, Brielynn and Mayana.

“It was one of the reasons I was interested in coming over here,” Palomino told WFAA. “I knew we were going to start a family at some point, and a huge benefit was being able to bring our babies to work for six months.”

The twins are the 129th and 130th babies to participate in the program, which began in 2001. While mothers are the primary beneficiaries of the program, nearly 20 percent have been new fathers.

“Even though you get to have time off under the law and all that, some people can’t afford to take off as much time as others,” said Lisa Mackay, the vice president of human resources at Schools Financial Credit Union. “So they end up being forced to come back to work sooner than they would want, and [have] to put their child in day care. This gives them the option to come back to work, but still be able to stay with their baby.”

While it’s true that infants can be noisy and demand a lot of attention, Mackay says that is not a problem.

“We know going in the employee is not going to be 100 percent productive. That is just part of the program, and it’s part of the intention of the program,” she said. “It’s not a problem.”

<script>(function(d, s, id) {  var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];  if (d.getElementById(id)) return;  js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id;  js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&amp;version=v2.7";  fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));</script>One of the perks of joining our Schools Financial family is the Babies in the Workplace Program. This program allows new...Posted by Schools Financial Credit Union on Friday, September 9, 2016

It certainly makes the transition easier for Palomino. She is back at work earlier than she would have been otherwise — and is happy to be there.

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