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2011's Greatest Good News Stories: Where Are They Now?

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 01/11/12 11:11 PM ET   Updated: 01/11/12 11:30 PM ET

Call it the feel-good flavor of the day. One story of bravery, kindness or generosity can take the world by storm, but in this 24/7 news cycle, most heroes only get five minutes of fame.

What happens when the cameras stop rolling? What does a brush with fame do to a good person? Is it possible that it makes their lives, dare we say, better? We decided to find out.

The woman who heard herself speak for the first time wants to help children who can't hear. And the wheelchair-bound Ohio teen who scored a touchdown for his high school team is now a local hero, who believes that a disability doesn't have to limit him.

Here are other more examples of how shining a light on good news today may just lead to a brighter tomorrow.

Video Inspires Free Transplant
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What Happened:
Back in September, Sarah Churman's video of her hearing her own voice for the first time in 29 years lit a viral fire through the Internet. The video, shot by her husband Sloan, shows what's known as the Esteem hearing implant being tested out on Sarah before the surgery. The second the implant is turned on, Sarah's face crumbles with emotion.

Where Is She Now:
After all the press following the video's viral explosion, Sarah is set to get the Esteem hearing implant for her other ear -- free of charge this Friday, January 13. Since the video, Sarah has appeared everywhere from -- the Ellen DeGeneres show to New York Ink, where she had them tattoo a heart behind her ear.

In an interview with The Huffington Post, Sarah said hearing her children for the first time was the most powerful part of having the implant.

"You miss out on so much, and the morning after I was on the kitchen floor just bawling," she said. "It just broke my heart thinking about all the people out there missing it like I did."

Sarah said that the experience has opened the door to many different opportunities, and shown her that, one day, she'd like to work with parents and children with hearing disabilities.
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