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Smithfield recalls over 24,000 lbs. of pepperoni cheese calzones due to plastic contamination

Smithfield Packaged Meats Corp. has recalled over 24,000 pounds of its pepperoni five cheese calzone, because it might be contaminated with hard, clear plastic.

The calzones were sold under the Stefano Foods label -- a business in Charlotte, North Carolina.

>> Read more trending news 

One person reported to the Stefano Foods in July that they bit into the food and it caused a small cut in their mouth, according to the U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service.

The uncooked pepperoni five cheese calzone products were produced on May 23, 2018, under the name, “Stefano’s Calzone Pepperoni Five Cheese Stuffed with Pepperoni and a Five Cheese Blend.” The recalled items have a use by date of 1/18/19. 

The product was sold in stores nationwide.

Food safety officials are encouraging customers to check their freezers and refrigerators for this product.

The calzones should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase for a refund. 

Missing bunny returned after Publix employees comb though landfill to find lost stuffed animal

If you’ve seen “Toy Story 3,” you know what happens to toys at a landfill, but this story has a happy ending thanks to employees at an Alabama Publix. 

Madison, 3, forgot her stuffed bunny in a shopping cart last week. Her mom, Jenna Rachal, went back to the store in hopes of finding her daughter’s toy, but it wasn’t turned in, WPMI reported

She did what almost any mother in this day and age would do: turned to Facebook for help. 

The manager of the store, Mike Gayhart, saw the post and what he did eventually helped Madison be reunited with her toy, WKRG reported

Thanks to security cameras, Gayhart tracked Madison and her bunny’s movements from the store, the parking lot, the cart and eventually a trash can and a dumpster. It then went to a trash compactor before being dumped into a garbage truck and driven to a landfill, WPMI reported

The story could end there, with Madison getting the bad news that her friend was gone forever. 

But Gayhart and three other employees went to the landfill and started digging, WPMI reported. Against all odds, they found him.

>> Read more trending news 

Gayheart then took the bunny home and washed him three times, so he could be returned to Madison, WPMI reported

“These guys did not tell me they were going to the dump. I did not ask them to do that either,” Rachal told WKRG

Rachal said that the bunny still has a smell, but Madison doesn’t care. She hasn’t let go of him and says he smells fine. 

Rachal says she will call Publix corporate offices to tell them what the employees did for her family, WPMI reported.

“Such kindness and above and beyond for their customers, community. Awesome people deserve to be recognized,” she told WKRG.

National Hot Dog Day 2018: 7-Eleven, Love's Travel Stops and more offering discounted, free dogs

National Hot Dog Day is July 18, and multiple restaurants across the country are offering discounted dogs to celebrate. 

>> Read more trending news 

Here are some of the places with National Hot Dog Day offers:

Philly Pretzel Factory

This regional soft pretzel bakery is offering its all beef Dietz & Watson dogs wrapped in American cheese and a Philly Pretzel for $1.

7-Eleven

The convenience store is offering $1 Big Bite hot dogs.

Hwy 55

At most locations in North and South Carolina, this retro 1950s restaurant will serve Southern-style dogs for 99 cents from 2 to 5 p.m. Today reported that all 138 national locations of the restaurants will participate in the offer, but customers will need to download the My Hwy 55 Rewards Program app or have a punch card to get the deal. There is a two hot dogs per person limit.

Sonic Drive-In

Sonic offers corn dogs for 99 cents every day from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Love's Travel Stops

Customers can get free hot dogs from one of Love’s Travel Stops 41 locations from 12:01 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, but it’s not just limited to hot dogs. Customers who present a barcode at the travel stop can get a dog or another roller grill item -- such as egg rolls, tornados, roller bites and others -- for free. The bar code can be accessed at Love’s official FacebookTwitter or Instagram pages.

Pilot Flying J

Pilot Flying J Travel Centers is offering customers a free hot dog July 18 through its myPilot app. A free hot dog or other roller grill item will be available at participating locations among more than 750 Pilot and Flying J Travel Centers. 

Before rushing out to get a discounted hot dog, be aware that every location may not participate in these deals and some stores and restaurants are not in every state. Be sure to call ahead if you want to take advantage of these offers.

WATCH: Thai soccer team members rescued from cave speak at news conference

Thai soccer team members who were rescued from a cave last week have been released from the hospital and spoke at a news conference Wednesday.

>> Watch the video here

>> COMPLETE COVERAGE: Photos | All 12 boys, soccer coach rescued from Thai cave | Who are the boys, their coach?5 things to know about the Thai cave rescue | More trending news

Update 8:29 a.m. EDT July 18: The news conference has ended.

Update 8:20 a.m. EDT July 18: When asked what they learned from the experience, assistant coach Ekapol “Ake” Chanthawong said he was pleased by the kindness he and the boys were shown and said he plans to be more careful in the future. 

When asked what their dreams are, many of the boys said they want to be professional soccer players and navy SEALs.

Chanthawong said rescuers decided who to extract first by taking volunteers.

The boys said they wanted to tell their parents that they are sorry.

Update 8:05 a.m. EDT July 18: The boys said they were saddened to learn that Thai navy SEAL Saman Kunan had died. Assistant coach Ekapol “Ake” Chanthawong said they felt “guilty.” At the news conference, the boys paid tribute to Kunan with personal messages, thanking him for his sacrifice.

Update 7:58 a.m. EDT July 18: The boys described the moment the divers arrived. One boy, who had a torch, walked up to a diver and said “hello,” they said. The boys told the divers they were doing fine, to which a diver replied in English, “Brilliant.” Assistant coach Ekapol “Ake” Chanthawong said he asked a boy to translate. The boys told rescuers that they had been trapped inside the cave for 10 days.

The boys said they all can swim, contradicting early media reports.

Chanthawong said the boys wanted to go into the cave and had not been inside before, the Guardian reported. Water started to pour and they began to head back to the entrance, then realized they were trapped.

At first, the team attempted to dig out of the cave, drank water from the cave’s walls and had no food, Chanthawong and the boys said.

Update 7:24 a.m. EDT July 18: The coach, all 12 boys and three Thai navy SEALs are introducing themselves to the media.

Before the boys started speaking, a health official said the boys have regained their strength and are doing well mentally, according to the Guardian.

Update 7:08 a.m. EDT July 18: The members of the Wild Boars soccer team have arrived at Chiang Rai’s provincial hall for the press conference.

Man steals date's car, uses it to take another girl to drive-in movie, police say

A man was arrested after police said he stole a car from a girl he was taking on a date. 

According to the arrest affidavit, Kelton Griffin went over to the victim's house to go on a date. Police said Griffin asked to drive her car because she 'did not know where he wanted to take her.' 

She agreed and the two switched seats. The suspect drove to a gas station and asked the woman to go inside and pick up some cigars. After she entered the business, Griffin drove off in her car, police said. 

>> Read more trending news 

The victim tried to call him several times. But, he did not answer her calls and blocked her on social media. 

Court records said she also let her family know her car was stolen by Kelton. On the same day, the victim's God sister texted her and said Griffin asked her on a date. He was picking her up from her grandmother's house. 

The woman drove to the home, and the suspect and his new date were already driving off. The victim's God sister then texted the victim and told her they were at the Summer Drive-in Movie theater in her vehicle. 

Police made the scene and arrested Kelton Griffin. 

He is charged with Theft of Property. 

City helps teen get permit for hot dog stand instead of permanently shutting him down

After someone filed a complaint about a non-permitted hot dog stand in Minneapolis, the city health department took the only step it could: They helped the teen entrepreneur get the legal paperwork he needed instead of forcing him to close up shop.

Jaequan Faulkner, 13, has been running Mr. Faulkner’s Old Fashioned Hot Dogs, off and on, for a couple of years. It all started back in 2016 when the teen found a hot dog grill at his uncle’s house. But this year someone called the Minneapolis Health Department and filed a complaint about the pop-up food stand, the Star Tribune reported

The health department took the extra steps of guiding Faulkner through the proper way to serve food to the public and made sure he had the equipment he legally needed to run his shop: thermometers, containers, hand sanitizer and cleaning stations for utensils. They also walked him through the correct way to handle food.

>> Read more trending news 

Faulkner passed his health inspection, and the city issued him a special event food permit. The teen didn’t pay for the permit, but the inspectors themselves chipped in the $87 fee, the Star Tribune reported.

Business leaders also helped Faulkner develop his plan on making the hot dog stand profitable.

Faulkner planned on using his profits for extra spending money, the Star Tribune reportedCNN reported that he was also using the money to buy new clothes and shoes.

But Faulkner said that he’s not doing  it just for the money. “It’s just something I enjoy doing,” he told the Star Tribune.

Next year, though, he wants to help others with the money he earns. He plans to put 25 cents of every hot dog sale to raise awareness about youth suicide and depression, the Star Tribune reported.

Faulkner’s permit is good for 10 days after issue, then he will move the stand to new locations including in front of an area police station which sponsored his next permit. Other organizations will pay for the permits to get through the rest of the summer, CNN reported.

Bicyclist ignores roadblocks, rides onto opening drawbridge

A Wisconsin woman had to be treated for injuries after paying no heed to barriers on a drawbridge in the process of opening.

The woman, whose name has not been released, fell into the gap between the road and the moving section of the bridge, WISN reported.

It happened on July 4, but was just recently released by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.

>> Read more trending news 

Good Samaritans pulled the woman out of the gap. She was taken to an area hospital for facial injuries, WISN reported.

The bridge was opened to allow boats that were at a fireworks show through, The Post Crescent reported. Once the bridge operator noticed what happened, he left it open until the woman was rescued.

Teacher in awe as strangers on plane donate $530 to her low-income students

A Chicago charter school teacher's heartwarming story of how strangers on a plane donated hundreds of dollars to her low-income students is going viral.

>> Nonprofit helping pay off mortgage on slain police officer's family home

According to WMAQ, Kimber Bermudez, who teaches at Carlos Fuentes Elementary School, was on a Southwest Airlines flight to Florida last week when the passenger next to her sparked up a conversation about her job. After learning that Bermudez is a teacher, he asked her about the greatest challenge she faces at her school.

"I told him that working at a low-income school can be heartbreaking," Bermudez wrote in a Facebook post. "We talked about the world and how no child should ever do without. In 2018, kids should never be hungry or in need of anything."

He then asked for Bermudez's contact information, saying his company often donates to schools like hers.

But the acts of kindness didn't stop there.

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

"The man behind me tapped my shoulder," Bermudez wrote. "I turned around and he apologized for listening in to my conversation, and he handed me a wad of cash. He told me to 'do something amazing' and sat back down. I was in complete awe that I had touched a stranger. I realized that there was $100 on top, and started to cry. I thanked him and told him how I would buy my students books and give back to the community. I didn’t count the money from that man, but I would later find out that he gave me $500."

After the plane landed, another man who overheard the conversation gave her $20, while another handed her $10, Bermudez said.

>> Read more trending news 

"I started crying on the plane," she wrote. "I told all four men that I would do something amazing for the kids. I was not telling my story to solicit money, and never intended to walk out of that flight with anything other than my carry on. I do however hope that posting this continues the chain reaction of people helping those in need, and especially the children in need."

Bermudez said her "heart is in complete shock and awe."

"This experience made me want to do more for the kids, and use my gift of speaking to help others in need," she wrote. "I want to pass this story around, and thank those strangers and their amazing hearts!"

Read more here or here.

>> See Bermudez's Facebook post here

Lip sync challenge: Watch Charlotte police officers get down in hilarious viral video

The Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department in North Carolina released a video of officers and staff getting down in a lip sync challenge Tuesday.

>> Watch the video here

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

Chief Kerr Putney even took part in the fun

The department has been posting about the video it was putting together for several days.

>> Read more trending news 

>> Police officers compete in viral lip sync battle

The friendly lip sync competition has been heating up on social media among law enforcement agencies across the country.

Nonprofit helping pay off mortgage on slain police officer's family home

A nonprofit organization has announced a major donation to help pay off the mortgage on a slain Massachusetts police officer's family home.

Weymouth police Sgt. Michael Chesna, 42, was shot and killed Sunday in the line of duty. 

>> On Boston25News.com: Weymouth police Officer Michael Chesna posthumously promoted to sergeant

The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation is providing the first $100,000 toward the mortgage and is challenging others to support the family through the initiative.

Any money raised exceeding the mortgage will go directly to Chesna's wife and two children.

>> On Boston25News.com: Court docs: Man stood over Weymouth officer and shot him 10 times

The foundation, established in memory of a fallen 9/11 firefighter, supports military and first responders who are killed in the line of duty. In addition to his service with the Weymouth Police Department, Chesna was also a military veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

>> Read more trending news 

Frank Siller, chairman and CEO of the foundation, will join Weymouth police Chief Richard Grimes at the Weymouth Police Department at 3 p.m. Wednesday to make the official announcement.

Click here if you’d like to donate.

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