MOSINEE - Imagine having to drive a car, brush your teeth and do all the normal things without your arms.
Jessica Cox has been doing that since birth, but that hasn’t stopped her from conquering her fear.
"My greatest fear was flying. So I decided to face it head on and become a pilot." said Cox.
But it hasn’t been a smooth ride her whole life.
"I was the type in junior high and high school student who wanted to blend in," Jessica said.
"Who wanted to go unnoticed, but my message now, because I’ve grown into an adult my confidence levels have increased, is to teach others to be confident about themselves about their difference and it’s ok to be different."
That’s why Jessica came to Mosinee high school Tuesday.
Student Anthony Gesick helped bring her here.
He’s partially blind and is unable to operate a vehicle or fly a plane, but that’s not stopping him either.
Jessica wants all the students to know they can do anything.
"I hope people can take away to celebrate differences. To realize that we are very different. We’re also very similar in many ways," said Cox.
"So we all want to be accepted and we should accept ourselves. If I can fly an airplane, there’s so much they can do."
Students seem to be catching on to her message.
"Don’t use 'I can’t' because obviously you can overcome anything you want," said Junior Mosinee High School Student, Jonah Siranni.
"You don’t have to give up. Don’t do it because you can do anything you want."
LAC DU FLAMBEAU - Ruby's pantry opened their doors Tuesday in Lac du Flambeau. This is the first time the Ruby's pantry has set up shop there. They decided to come to Lac du Flambeau because of the good turnout in Rhinelander. The food pantry asks that people give a $20 donation.
“It's not your typical food pantry,” says Gloria Cobb, Ruby's Pantry Lac du Flambeau Lead Coordinator. “This is an opportunity to give people dignity, to serve with dignity, and it's a donation base.”
“I mean look at the hustle and bustle going on we've got the community coming together not only Lac du Flambeau but the surrounding community coming together to meet a very basic need and that's to help with hunger,” says Cobb.
The pantry offered items like strawberries, cake mix, and toilet paper. More than 400 people were expected to show up.
“A participant will go through the line with a laundry basket and or box and they will be offered items,” says Cobb. “They can refuse them however we will encourage them to take the item because somebody else that they may know may have a need.”
“They get a certain amount of each item and they go through the line like an assembly line,” says Cobb.
The pantry had more than 21,000 pounds of food to give away.
WAUSAU - Students at Northcentral Technical College in Wausau got to see Tibetan monks create a work of art steeped in Buddhist history.
The Mandala Sand Art is an ancient Tantric Buddhist tradition dating back thousands of years.
The Tibetan Monks from the Drepung Loseling Monastery are on an international tour called Mystical Arts of Tibet where they create mandalas in front of an audience.
"The colored patterns we are using, we are following the scriptures, the Buddhist scriptures. It's a very old tradition, more than 2,500 years ago," says Geshe Loden, head of the Mystical Arts of Tibet.
The monks' last visit to Northcentral Technical College in 2011 was so popular, they were invited back.
"At NTC we feel like it's important to offer our students a variety of different programming, and one of the things we feel our responsibility to do is expose our students to other cultures, other religions, other ideas," says Director of Student Development Shawn Sullivan.
The monks work hours at a time placing sand delicately in the lines of the intricate pattern.
The mandala will take them four days to complete, but the beautiful creation won't last long.
"After finishing this, making the mandala, we consecrate this completed mandala, and we dismantle it to symbolize the impermanence of all the conditioned things, all the phenomena," says Loden.
The monks' tour raises money for more than 3,000 monasteries in India. They also do it to raise awareness about the plight of Tibetans.
"Lord Buddha had started this, and that tradition keeps going on."
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