True Stories

plane illustration
The Gift and the Guilt of the Sole Survivor

The odds of surviving even the most serious plane crash are 76 percent. The odds of being the only… >>

cathy heying
Feel-Good Story: Social Worker-Mechanic Gives a Lift

Social worker-turned-mechanic Cathy Heying provides affordable car repair to those in need. >>

michael cade, henry mchenry
Hero Barber and Customer Risk Their Lives for a Stranger

When a woman screamed, the two men sprinted into the line of fire to help. >>

9/11
Remembering September 11: How America Has Changed

"Nothing will ever be the same" was our constant refrain after the terrorist attacks. But how… >>

illustration of man at computer
Judging Jack: When a Teacher Finally Understands a Student

I thought my student was ordinary. I came to learn he was just too busy being brilliant. >>

woman with frostbite
Frozen Back to Life: How Hypothermia Can Help Cheat Death

One hundred years ago, hypothermia was often lethal. Now doctors induce it to save people on the… >>

joseph anand invention
Teen’s Invention to Help Injured Veterans

An electronics whiz uses his robotics knowledge to make life a little easier for returning veterans. >>

holding hands
Your 100-Word True Stories: Contest Winners

More than 7,000 people entered our contest and gave us the Reader's Digest version of their lives… >>

robin-williams-02-sl
RD Interview: Robin Williams, in His Own Words

Robin Williams was unscripted and uncensored—and you could always expect the unexpected, as in… >>

mother and son
Incredible: This Son’s App Saved His Mother’s Life

Inspired by his grandfather's ingenuity, Andrew Josephson developed a stethoscope app that worked… >>

rwanda project
10 Inspiring Stories of Extreme Forgiveness

We can all learn from these remarkable people who, after suffering devastating tragedies, were able… >>

wolf running through water
There Was Once a Wolf Who Loved Too Much. And What Happened to Him Was a Crime.

One day in Alaska, a black wolf appeared in front of wildlife photographer Nick Jans. This is the… >>

deaf dj
What It’s Like to Be a Deaf DJ

Music is not all about hearing. >>

man hugging lion
Can This Man Save Africa’s Lions From Doom?

Wild lion populations are being decimated, and yet life is worse for those in captivity who often… >>

kissing on sunday
The Husband Who Vanished

For 15 years, Anne McDonnell lived in limbo—not knowing whether her Jim was dead or alive. Then… >>

Bob Hope, USO
Bob Hope’s Emotional USO Memories: “I Get a Lot More Than I Give”

A look back at the inspiring hard work entertainer Bob Hope put in for our troops—written by the… >>

August 1935 RD Classics
—And Sudden Death: The Reader’s Digest Classic

If you have the nerve to drive fast and take chances, you ought to read this classic article from… >>

cara jumper
The Girl Whose Strength Was Beyond Her Years

When her grandfather falls ill, a fearless little girl comes to the rescue. >>

great white shark
Shark! Swimmer Fights Terror in Sudden Attack

Suddenly, the shark drags Denis back up to the surface. He gulps air before being dragged down… >>

mrs. clarence
How Mrs. Clarence’s Kindness Saved My Life

In my family’s desperate hour, my fifth-grade teacher knew just what to do. >>