True Stories

more mother-in-law secrets
12 Short, Sweet Stories About Moms (That Will Make You Want to Call Yours)

In 100 words or less, readers share their poignant tales of the bond between mother and child. Have… >>

may 2015 everday heroes strangers who came running
When a Car Plunged Into a Philadelphia Creek, These Strangers All Ran to Help

This extraordinary group of Samaritans worked together to save a woman from drowning. >>

may 2015 story of henry
A Stroke, A Coma, A Revelation: How a Quadriplegic Man Helped Pioneer His Own Life-Changing Robot

After a paralyzing stroke, Henry Evans went from feeling suicidal to full of optimism with help… >>

may 2015 telephone operator
How a Boy and His Telephone Operator Formed a Lovely, Lasting Friendship

In this Reader's Digest Classic, originally published in 1966 as "The Voice in the Box," a little… >>

may 2015 WOLI stop whining
Roxane Gay Makes a Case for Why We Should All Quit Whining

The professor and author was the queen of complaints—until she realized what she was missing. >>

medical miracles
5 Stunning Medical Miracles That Doctors Can’t Explain

Most people don’t survive a dying heart or a brain-eating amoeba. 
These five patients were… >>

theater basement illo
I Learned This Most Valuable Life Lesson … From a Meal With an Amazing Waiter

In a theater basement 20 years ago, Emily Winslow learned a lesson in generosity that she'll never… >>

kilimanjaro
In Spite of Cerebral Palsy, One Man Made a Furious Climb Up Mount Kilimanjaro

Diagnosed with cerebral palsy as an infant, Bonner Paddock had no shortage of rage. With braces on… >>

collared
She Was Studying in Her Room. Then a Stranger Fastened a Bomb to Her Neck.

When a man in a ski mask invaded Maddie Pulver's home and attached a bomb collar to her neck, it… >>

petting dog
Walking the Family Dog I Never Wanted Got Me Through My Husband’s Cancer

In the midst of her husband's fight with leukemia, Jill Smolowe's walks with Misty reminded her… >>

slave-in-the-garage-01-af
The Slave in the Garage

Sold by her parents and smuggled into the U.S., one young girl did a family's dirty work for two… >>

cello teacher
Ari & the Cello Chair

A chance encounter with a music teacher filled me with passion and purpose. >>

the night I met Einstein
The Night I Met Einstein

This Reader's Digest Classic of "My Most Unforgettable Character" offers a lesson in life—and… >>

lauren kornacki
She Lifted a Car Off Her Dad and Saved His Life

Lauren Kornacki's father was working on a car when it fell of the jack, crushing him and knocking… >>

everyday heroes joe welch
This Guy Punched an Alligator to Save His Son

With fearless determination, Joe Welch warded off a vicious reptile to protect his 6-year-old son. >>

cookies and passport
A Frustrating Plane Delay, and the Simple Baggie of Cookies That Made It All Better

My delayed flight led to to a life-changing interaction. >>

elephants
How 2 Elephants Used Strength—and Smarts—to Save a Bridge

When massive logs and a rushing river threaten a bridge, these two elephants did something… >>

family in room 407
The Baby Who Refused to Die: 11 Hours in Room 407

Doctors said Austin Gerstenslager had zero chance of survival at birth, so his parents waited for… >>

signal rescuers
6 Proven Skills for Any Emergency, From a Reader’s Digest Staffer Who’s Edited 30+ Survival Dramas

As the editor of many of Reader's Digest's survival stories, I've learned a lot about how to stay… >>

Don Molesky John Underwood
An Ohio Couple Was Trapped in a Flooding Basement. Their Dramatic Rescue Will Restore Your Faith in Humanity.

The Hammondses were trapped in their flooded basement, with the water line rapidly rising above 8… >>