98-Year-Old Man Donates $2M Life Savings To Build 400-Acre Wildlife Sanctuary

98-year-old Russ Gremel has lived a long, simple life.

He was never married, didn’t have any kids, and lived in the same brick bungalow in Chicago for 95 years.

Gremel served in World War II, went to law school, and was retired by age 45. While he didn’t have a family of his own, many people in the community considered him a part of theirs.

He served as a Boy Scout scoutmaster for more than 60 years, and was loved by everyone who knew him.

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Not only did he enjoy helping people, but he had a passion for animals and wildlife as well.

That’s why he decided to donate his $2 million life savings to the Illinois Audubon Society to be used to create a 400-acre wildlife refuge called the Gremel Wildlife Sanctuary.

Gremel’s large fortune grew over the years after he bought $1,000 worth of Walgreens stock seven decades ago.

Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation/Facebook

Illinois Audubon Society executive director Jim Herkert was eternally grateful for Gremel’s generous donation and told TODAY that it will have a significant impact on wildlife and on the community.

“It’s incredibly generous,” Herkert told TODAY. “It’s allowing us to protect a really valuable and important piece of property and fulfill one of Russ’ wishes that we could find a place where people could come out and experience nature the way he did as a kid.”

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Gremel sadly passed away the following year at 99 years old, but was thankfully able to see his sanctuary dream come to fruition.

Gremel will aways be remembered for his kindness toward both people and animals, and his legacy will live on in the Gremel Wildlife Sanctuary.

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Lucky Elderly Man Is Greeted Every Day By A “Friend” Who Crawls Out Of The Ice:

We’ve all seen some unique and unlikely friendships over the years, but this one here may take the cake!

One day, a starving otter appeared at an elderly man’s door wanting some food. Ever since, Seppo Laamanen, 65, and Iivari the otter have been inseparable best friends.

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It all started when Seppo fed worms and fish to the small and malnourished otter who was clearly looking for food.

After that, the friendly animal repaid the kindness by visiting the man at his home in Punkaharju in easter Finland. This was the start of something special.

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There’s no way Seppo could’ve ever imagined it’d all lead to this. This adorably unique friendship is one for the ages, and it’s something you have to see to believe.

There’s nothing like the bond between two friends regardless of the species! 🙂

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10 Of The “Most Loyal” Dog Breeds On The Planet

Giving love and support to humans is something that some dogs do better than others.

While many dogs love everyone they meet and are willing to take treats or belly rubs from anyone, the pups we found are just the opposite.

These 10 dogs are some of the most loyal breeds on the planet. They are rock steady in their loyalty to their owner no matter what.

1) Akita

When the American Kennel Club (AKC) lists loyalty to describe the temperament of the Akita, you know they mean business. The beautiful double-coated working dog of Japanese ancestry is considered hardwired in protecting those she loves. They should be socialized with other dogs and people from the time they are puppies. Their silly, fun, but dignified personalities round out the loyal Akita.

Source: NicoMonaco/Flickr

2) Boxer

This working dog is smart, full of energy, and oh so loyal to their family. They get along great with kids and have an innate instinct to protect their pack. He’s a watchdog with a heart of gold who oozes dedication to his owner.

Source: Pierre Pocs Photography/Flickr

3) Skye Terrier

Known as the “small dog with the big ears,” this adorable breed hails from the Scottish Isle of Skye, hence the name. Whether you live in the city or the country, this small dog with a big personality is steadfast in snuggling, playtime, and remaining loyal to his owners.

Source: WaketheSun/Flickr

4) Beagle

This merry hound is friendly, curious and incredibly loyal. While he doesn’t mind the occasional couch potato time, this spunky pooch is energetic and merry. A fun fact about this hound: the breed standard is for 13 inches and under and another in the 13-15 inch category. No matter how you size him, these adorable dogs just want to cling to you.

Source: Simon Hameau/Flickr

5) Shar-Pei

This wrinkly non-sporting breed is standoffish to strangers but very loyal to his owner. His ancient Chinese roots are part of the charm of the Shar-Pei. Regal, strong, and smart, if you want a BFF for life, this loose-skinned pooch may be the right choice for you.

Source: Alessandro Persano/Flickr

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