CBS 42’s top ‘good news’ stories of 2020

Good News

(Alexis Dinga/TikTok)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — If you’re like any of us at CBS 42, you’re ready to say a loud “good riddance” to 2020. But before turning the page, we’re reflecting on the stories from this year that captured your heart, gave you a good laugh, or made you proud of our community. Here’s a look at our top 10 (analytics-backed) “good news” stories from this year.

1. Mail carrier crashes Auburn students’ TikTok video, becomes internet sensation

A USPS driver accidentally interrupted two Auburn University students’ TikTok video. The unexpected, adorable result went viral, racking up a combined total of over 36 million views.

(Alexis Dinga/TikTok)

2. Birmingham bids farewell to Legion Field after 93 years

After a bittersweet goodbye to Birmingham’s “Old Gray Lady,” a more exciting chapter in the city’s sports history is on the horizon. In 2021, the city will open Protective Stadium, a state-of-the-art facility that has the nation talking about Birmingham as a top travel destination. Now that’s some good news.

Birmingham Bowl at Legion Field

3. Talladega County principal raps out COVID-19 safety measures in ‘Can’t Touch This’ parody video

The creative Childersburg principal that brought us this viral “masterpiece” on his feelings about the coronavirus came back with his spin on MC Hammer’s hit classic “Can’t Touch This.”

Snapshot from Dr. Quentin Lee’s “Can’t Touch This” parody video (Childersburg High School)

4. Woodlawn student graduates high school with over 36 college credits, will study engineering

Malika Freeman graduated from high school this past Spring with enough credits to start college as a sophomore. In addition to studying engineering, Freeman says she hopes to create more opportunities like summer camps for young Black girls who wish to pursue science and engineering career paths.

Malika Freeman (CBS 42)

5. ‘To-go’ alcohol from bars and restaurants approved by Alabama ABC Board

In March the coronavirus pandemic forced businesses to close and restaurants to embrace drive-thru and curbside pickup options. Fortunately for libation-loving Alabamians, the ABC Board gave the thumbs up to curbside cocktails. Cheers to that.

6. Rapper Lil Baby gives 1,000 coats away to Birmingham residents in need

Using the $1.5 million he earned from his single “The Bigger Picture,” Grammy-nominated rapper Lil Baby has been donating to organizations and communities in need. After encouragement from Birmingham City Councilor John Hilliard, Lil Baby added Birmingham to his list of recipients.

FILE – Lil Baby performs at the BET Awards in Los Angeles on June 23, 2019. Rapper Lil Baby has been named artist of the year at the second annual Apple Music Awards. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

7. Longtime Birmingham anchor Scott Richards returns to airwaves with new ‘Inside This Day’ segment on CBS 42 News

Scott Richards was a mainstay in Birmingham TV news for 33 years until his retirement in 2014. After Scott’s 6-year hiatus, we were thrilled to welcome him into the CBS 42 News family this past July. In his “Inside This Day” segment, Scott explores different days in history every Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday on the CBS 42 News at 4 p.m. in the second half of the hour. Learn more about Scott here.

Scott Richards (CBS 42)

8. Alabama distillery brewing up free hand sanitizer amid coronavirus crisis

Even after business came to a screeching halt earlier this year, Birmingham’s premier distillery has kept busy. In March, Dread River Distilling Company began recycling alcohol (that is typically discarded during the distilling process) into sanitizing spray for local businesses running low on hard-to-find cleaning supplies.

Dread River Distilling Co.’s sanitizing spray is made from previously discarded alcohols from the distilling process (Malique Rankin | CBS 42)

9. Enough carfentanil to kill 127,000 people seized in historic Walker County drug bust

In October, Walker County deputies confiscated over $900,000 worth of carfentanil, among other illicit substances, in what they called a “historic drug bust.” The amount seized, 9 ounces, could have killed 127,000 people, they said. Great work keeping our community safe, deputies!

Walker County deputies after making “historic” drug bust (Walker County Sheriff’s Office)

10. Drug developed at UAB helping treat coronavirus in China

Before COVID-19 had reached pandemic status, researchers at UAB were already on the forefront in the fight against the coronavirus. Developed at UAB, Remdesivir, which was originally created to treat SARS patients in the early 2000s, became a household name in 2020 as a COVID-19 treatment.

FILE – In this March 2020 photo provided by Gilead Sciences, rubber stoppers are placed onto filled vials of the investigational drug remdesivir at a Gilead manufacturing site in the United States. Given through an IV, the medication is designed to interfere with an enzyme that reproduces viral genetic material. (Gilead Sciences via AP)

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