June 7th, 2012
04:49 PM ET

CNN Mash-up: Inspiring graduates, odd sport

The CNN Daily Mash-up is a roundup of some of the most interesting, surprising, curious, poignant or significant items to appear on CNN.com in the past 24 hours. We top it with a collection of the day's most striking photographs from around the world.

The power of positive thinking

Dawn Loggins is a remarkable young woman from a remarkable North Carolina town. After having lived in a house with no electricity or water, she became homeless at the start of her senior year of high school, abandoned by her drug-abusing parents. But she kept going to school, earning straight A's during the day and scrubbing the floors at night. With her community rallying around her, Loggins will head off to her dream college this fall. She had help, but it was her own determination that made it happen.

When I was younger, I was able to look at all the bad choices - at the neglect, and the drug abuse, and everything that was happening - and make a decision for myself that I was not going to end up like my parents, living from paycheck to paycheck.

You can see more of Loggins' story on "AC 360" on CNN tonight at 8 ET.

The most senior member of the senior class

The four-year slog through high school seems like a long time to many students as they near graduation. But they have nothing on Ann Lupica Colagiovanni, who had to quit school at 17 - because of the Great Depression. But on Wednesday, CNN affiliate WJW reports, Shaker Heights High School in Ohio conferred an honorary high school diploma on Colagiovanni at age 97.

Watch a CNN reporter get kicked in the ...

It's a simple sport, really: Two men grab each other by the shoulders and commence to kicking each other's shins until one of them falls down. The rules have changed a bit since the beginning in ancient England, but "this is about hurting him so he gives up, basically," our expert, Ben Granall, says.

All hail Parker, Colorado

CNN iReporter McKay Barnes looked outside and grabbed a camera. Hail from a thunderstorm was piling up in the driveway like Rocky Mountain snow. Check it out, and be glad you're not shoveling in June.

A father's pilgrimage

Denis Asselin is on a seven-week, 525-mile walk in memory of his son Nathaniel, who committed suicide last year after a long struggle with a mental disorder. The father's gesture moved many CNN.com users, including Expressurslf, who wrote:

I walk every night and it brings me inner peace and contentment. We take this life for granted too often and before we know it, it's gone. Sometimes we need to take a walk, clear our minds, and remember to be good to ourselves and each other.

On the horizon: Syria meeting, Belmont Stakes

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will meet Friday in Washington with Kofi Annan, the envoy for the United Nations and the Arab League, to discuss the situation in Syria.

The Belmont Stakes horse race will be run late Saturday afternoon. I'll Have Another, the winner of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, is the favorite in this race, but only 11 horses before him have succeeded in capturing racing's Triple Crown.

June 8 anniversaries

  • 1968 – James Earl Ray, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassin, was arrested at London's Heathrow Airport after a two-month manhunt.
  • 1981 – Israeli bombers leveled the Osirak nuclear reactor in Iraq.
  • 2006 – U.S. and Iraqi authorities announced that terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed in a coalition airstrike near Baquba the previous day.

June 8 birthdays

  • Former first lady Barbara Bush, 87
  • Author Sara Paretsky, 65
  • Actress Kathy Baker, 62
  • "Dilbert" cartoonist Scott Adams, 55
  • Actor Keenan Ivory Wayans, 54
  • Actress Julianna Margulies, 46
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soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. chrissy

    Wht a load of crap! You most definitely know how the jacking, trolling and lurking came about for you are the one who started it!

    June 9, 2012 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |
    • dazzle ©

      @chrissy, my first laugh of the morning.. How are you?

      June 9, 2012 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
  2. chrissy

    And FYI, AOL sent those discs to every HOUSEHOLD in america, not every bored HOUSEWIFE!

    June 9, 2012 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  3. chrissy

    Lol i was pretty good, matter of fact i still am in spite of the previous posts by the *king of crap* lmfao! It never ceases to amaze me the lengths he goes to, to justify his actions. And always he must get that little housewife dig in there. Lol

    June 9, 2012 at 9:30 am | Report abuse |
  4. chrissy

    Oh and dazzle, i guess for old times lets act as though we are in an AOL chatroom (although ive never been in one) And how are you today ms dazzle?

    June 9, 2012 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
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