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Life’s Hard Bargain by Donald G. Denihan

(NewsUSA) - I almost died shortly before Father’s Day in 2012, saved, ultimately, by my father. You might say I found him the night I almost lost my life.

Donal DenihanHe had died nearly thirty years before, but he was with me in the darkest moments of a harrowing, night-long ordeal being stranded at sea off the Bahamas in the midst of a violent storm. Through those endless rain-swept and wind-ravaged hours, my thoughts turned to him.

My father was a veteran of World War II, a product of the Greatest Generation who came home from Europe to build the America of today. He never once said “I love you.” It just wasn’t his way. His way was defined by work at the dry-cleaning business the family had founded.

My father was fond of saying, “No morning sun shines all day.” He said that to make the point that you should save your money. Today, I realize my father might just as easily have been talking about life in general. Life is full of clouds, storms, and darkness that serve to make us appreciate the light all the more. You don’t come out ahead in every bargain you make, but you must strive to honor the terms.

I learned that principle from my father and revisited it, along with so many other lessons he imparted, in that long night at sea when I didn’t think I’d live to see the dawn. Every time I started to slip away, feeling my eyes start to close for maybe the last time, I saw his face.

That night at sea, I started talking to my father as if he were there. I told him I had spent my life trying to do good things and I felt mine was a life well lived. I told myHard Bargain father that before I made a serious decision, I would ask myself, what would Dad do? I knew he loved me even though he never expressed it the way the fathers of my friends did and assured him I had grown into a man who was a lot like him, though inwardly I wondered if I’d be joining him soon.

I think about life as encapsulated in that long night stranded at sea with my father by my side. It’s simple to push down the throttle and pass the channel markers beyond the harbor. It’s easy to leave everything behind in the wake of white water and be free, easy to make a hard bargain with the calm sea. The hard bargain you make with rougher waters is altogether different because you’re at their mercy, a prisoner of their whims.

In times like those, keep your father close, in heart and mind, to guide you clear of the storm and into the light.

Donald G. Denihan, a real estate entrepreneur and waterman, is the author of HARD BARGAIN: What Life-Altering Experiences Taught Me About Faith, Friendship, and Family.

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AI Expo Convenes and Educates

(NewsUSA) - Experts from industry and government, along with academic leaders and interested citizens from across the country, participated in a vibrant exchange of ideas about initiatives in artificial intelligence and emerging technologies.  

The AI Expo for National Competitiveness and Ash Carter Exchange were held in Washington, D.C., on May 7-8, 2024, hosted by Special Competitive Studies Project (SCSP), a nonprofit and nonpartisan initiative with a goal of making recommendations to strengthen America's long-term competitiveness in AI and other emerging technologies. 

The AI Expo saw strategic tech ideas shared, key collaborative relationships formed, and the gap between cutting-edge innovation and safeguarding our national security was bridged. Presentations and discussions addressed America’s long-term competitiveness in emerging technologies with regard to national security, the economy, and society.

The AI Expo and the co-located Ash Carter Exchange brought together over 10,000 attendees, 150 exhibitors, and 440 speakers. The two events featured insights from thought leaders on the future of technology and private-public relationships. Senior government officials including National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, United States Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General C.Q. Brown, Jr., and United States Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer spoke to attendees about the challenges facing our nation and outlined their visions for maintaining U.S. competitiveness. In addition, the Expo exhibitors included some of the largest companies in the United States as well as start-ups.

Multiple stages, special event rooms, and other venues included a Talent Marketplace and Bookstore. The Talent Marketplace attracted professionals at all career stages, offering opportunities to learn about new roles, network with peers, and learn about educational opportunities at leading universities. The Bookstore provided attendees and speakers a space to delve into new ideas at the forefront of technology and innovation by displaying over 100 books and hosting in-person conversations with some of the authors. 

SCSP is already looking ahead to hosting the next AI Expo for National Competitiveness in 2025, building on this year's success. Visit to learn more about SCSP and to sign up for information about next year’s expo. Meanwhile, look for videos coming soon the AI Expo on the SCSP YouTube Channel.

Texas Celebrates Youth Sports This Summer

(NewsUSA) - Kids take the field in a big way this summer in Plano, Texas, as the town gears up to host a diverse mix of activities that attract the best young talent from across the United States.

A series of tournaments begins in June, and Plano’s top-notch youth athletic facilities and welcoming community spirit ensure that each kid feels like a winner, regardless of what happens on the field.

Summer kicks off with soccer on the weekend of June 14, as boys and girls 13U-19U teams compete in the U.S. Soccer Southern Presidents Cup for the chance to qualify for the U.S. Youth Soccer Regional Presidents Cup events. Winners of the regionals will compete in the U.S. Youth Soccer National Presidents Cup on July 12-16 in Wichita, Kansas.

The US Soccer Southern Presidents Cup event is expected to bring more than 40,000 visitors to Plano, and generate $6 million in economic impact.

"We are incredibly honored to host the prestigious U.S. Youth Sports Presidents Cup in Plano," says Mark Thompson, Executive Director of Visit Plano. "This event not only highlights our city's dedication to fostering youth athletic talent, but also showcases Plano as a premier destination for major sporting events,” he adds.

The same weekend, Plano plays host to two more youth sports events. The Aloha Texas Two-Step Lacrosse Tournament brings top teams from across Texas to Plano for a weekend of competitive lacrosse, and the Texas Glory Summer Shootout features 14U-18U girls’ softball.

Tennis fans will want to tune in from June 7-12, when the U.S. Tennis at Plano’s High Point Tennis Center, the U.S. Tennis Association hosts the Texas Slam tournament, featuring competition for both boys and girls from across Texas in four age divisions with both singles and doubles matches. 

Other youth sports events coming to Plano this summer include the Girls Texas Draw Lacrosse Tournament (June 1-2), the Elite Club National League (ECNL) Regional League South Playoffs for soccer (June 5-9), the Triple Crown Sports Texas State Championships for fast pitch softball (June 7-9), and the Texas 2 Finger ultimate frisbee championship (June 29-30).

As summer heats up, so does Plano, as talented young athletes and future stars from across the region are set to deliver unforgettable moments of skill, sportsmanship, and competition. For more information, check out  

BookTrib’s Bites: Thrillers to Travelogues, and Everything in Between

(NewsUSA) - The BucharestThe Bucharest Dossier by William Maz

“The Bourne Identity” meets John le Carre’s “The Spy Who Came In from the Cold.”

Bill Hefflin is a man apart—apart from life, apart from his homeland, apart from love. And he is about to learn that in the world of cold war espionage, life is cheap.

At the start of the 1989 uprising in Romania, CIA analyst Hefflin—a disillusioned Romanian expat—arrives in Bucharest at the insistence of his KGB asset, code-named Boris. As Hefflin becomes embroiled in an uprising that turns into a brutal revolution, nothing is as it seems, including the search for his childhood love, which has taken on mythical proportions.

With the bloody events unfolding at blinding speed, Hefflin realizes the revolution is manipulated by outside forces, including his own CIA and Boris—the puppeteer who seems to be pulling all the strings of Hefflin’s life. Purchase at

Looking for LegendsLooking for Legends by Scott and Tarantino

Would you rather have dreams, or memories?

Whether you're an armchair traveler, an occasional tourist, a seasoned globetrotter, a daring adventurer, or an intrepid explorer, there's something for everyone in Looking for Legends.

Part travelogue and part good old-fashioned action story, this witty commentary recreates the magic and excitement of adventure. The married authors span the globe over 25 years and discover that travel is more than the journey and the sights. It's about the people, the incredible individuals they befriend along the way--the towering legends who lived life out loud.

Complete with original, hand-drawn maps and more than 150 images, Looking for Legends delivers you to destinations from your wildest dreams: walk through the desert sands; dance the tango; drink ouzo on Stavros Beach; discover a mountain higher than Everest; unlock the secrets of the Rosetta Stone, and much more. Purchase at

Klara's TruthKlara’s Truth by Susan Weissbach Friedman

May 2014. Dr. Klara Lieberman—49, single, an archaeology professor and a contained person living a contained life—receives a letter from her estranged mother, Bessie, that will dramatically change her life. Her father—who has been absent from her life for 43 years—is dead. Has been for many years.  But now the Polish government is giving financial reparations for land it stole from its Jewish citizens during WWII, and Bessie wants the money. Klara wants answers about her father – so she flies to Warsaw.

Klara begins to piece together her father’s, and her own, story. She also connects with extended family, begins a romantic relationship, and discovers her calling: repairing the hundreds of pre-War Jewish cemeteries in Poland. Along the way, she makes peace with her past and builds purposefully toward a bigger future. Purchase at

The guideThe Guide - Survival, Warfighting, Peacemaking by Gregory Munck

Life with a drug-addicted father meant sleeping with one eye open, nervously anticipating but not knowing what chaotic event would happen next. Whether it was having a shotgun placed against his head or snorting cocaine at 13 with his dad, the unpredictable and unwanted were Greg Munck’s normal. Just when his anxiety and anger were starting to rumble, the Marines and a long boat ride to Kuwait to fight in the Gulf War changed the trajectory—and eternity—of a 20-year-old warfighter gifted by God to lead men.

Simple, emotional, and visceral, this story is about earth’s brokenness, God’s presence, and the true significance that resonates in the soul of every man. To do great things is embedded in the heart of every man, but the process demands courage, perseverance, and faith. Discover the bravery to win your own biggest emotional and spiritual battles. Purchase at


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Rockstar Energy Drink Wants to Give You Cash Back at the Pump to Fuel Your Summer Road Trip

(NewsUSA) - One lucky winner will score big when participating in Rockstar Energy's “Fuel Your Drive” promotion

PURCHASE, N.Y., June 7, 2024 – With people looking to get out and travel more this summer, Rockstar Energy Drink wants to come along for the ride and “Fuel Your Drive” to help summer road-trippers across the country get cash back and stay energized to get to their next destination.

Beginning with Memorial Day weekend, nearly 85% of Americans are anticipated to have travel plans throughout the summer season. In fact, 75% of Americans intend to take at least one road trip this summer, most driving somewhere within 100 miles of their home¹.

“With summer travel on the rise, we know consumers will need that little bit of energy and mental boost to make it through long car rides, so we’re thrilled to be able to bring back the ‘Fuel Your Drive’ program,” said Sean Bonthuys, PepsiCo Senior Director of Brand Marketing, Energy Portfolio. “Meeting our consumers’ needs has always been one of our main priorities as a brand, and we’re happy to be able to provide new offerings and fan favorites, while putting cash back in their wallets at the same time.”

Now through the end of the year, customers who purchase any two Rockstar Energy products at participating convenience stores and gas stations nationwide, and text ‘ROCKSTAR’ and a photo of their receipt to 73774, will receive $5 cash back – all courtesy of Rockstar Energy.

That’s not all. Rockstar Energy will also be giving away a Rockstar custom-wrapped 2024 Jeep Wrangler, as well as $20,000, to one grand prize winner for the ultimate summer road trip. Participants can enter HERE for a chance to win the grand prize and earn bonus entries by redeeming the cash back offer.

No road trip is ever successful without a road trip companion – which is where the latest Rockstar Energy product line, Focus, comes in. Available in three zero sugar flavors (Lemon Lime, White Peach, and Orange Pineapple), Rockstar Focus contains a unique blend of ingredients including Lion's Mane, a mushroom used in traditional eastern cultures. The zero sugar, calorie free beverage delivers functional energy and a mental boost to help get you through your road trip adventures.   Additional offerings from Rockstar Energy include Rockstar Original and Rockstar Pure Zero, which provide sustained mind-body energy for up to five hours and are fully charged with B-vitamins and formulated with guarana, taurine, and caffeine. 

No matter where your summer plans will take you, Rockstar Energy has your back to take you on your next epic adventure. For more information on Rockstar Energy’s “Fuel Your Drive” promotion, visit

Forty-Six Years of Puppy Love – As Told Through Shiva Eyes

(NewsUSA) - Can an ordinary life be extraordinary? It depends on the lens through which one views it. In the case of Marc Gellman, that lens is Shiva Eyes and the life is the one he describes in his powerful and unforgettable memoir, Seven Days of SHIVA.

Young Marc with BarbaraThis love story is a full portrait of a marriage that will make you smile, laugh, and cry. Looking through a husband’s Shiva Eyes, readers will experience the couple’s wondrous life as he searches deep into his soul to find the answer: Can a forty-year marriage still have been magical, romantic, and filled with life, even with a thirty-year struggle with breast cancer?

Don’t let the title mislead you . . . The story is a romantic celebration of life and the next romantic love story – a New York City tale about a boy from Brooklyn and a girl from The Bronx.

Seized with grief at the loss of his beloved and vibrant wife Barbara, Marc does the only thing he finds he can do: He starts telling stories. This unique memoir is much more than a tribute to a departed love. Their story shows how a cancer journey seamlessly entwines through a four-decades-long love story.

Surrounded by family and friends for seven days of sitting Shiva, Marc recounts his fairytale love story, from their teenage meeting in the 1960s Rockaway summer scene, to being early marrieds in New York City, to suburban parenting, and to life as an urban couple relishing their empty nest. Once it appears, Barbara's courageous, grueling, determined, hope-filled fight against a brutal disease is unflinchingly depicted.

With candor and humor, laughter and tears, the author shares the tales of a life both wildly charmed and excruciatingly challenging. Theirs is a life of parties and singingMarc today and celebration, and a life of hard work raising three lively children while managing two demanding careers. It’s a life of playful adventures and hijinks, of making the most of every silly moment in even the most serious of times. A life of standing up to every challenge together and dancing close whenever they can.

Observing the singular, remarkable romance of Marc and Barbara through Shiva Eyes, the author uncovers a depth to their love he’d never fully grasped, and a strength in his wife that he’d never fully understood. And about everything that the cancer couldn’t touch: their nonstop silliness and playful puppy love that endured through the hills and valleys of their life together. Entwined into their marriage, cancer took a place in their love story without overtaking it.

Don’t be surprised if you see some of yourselves in the characters and their journey. Come along to discover a happy-ever-after born of laughter, devotion, faith, and above all, a teenage puppy love that only grew with each passing year.

Learn more at and purchase at

How To Teach Your Children To Be Household Helpers

(NewsUSA) - Children can begin learning and participating in household duties as young as two. While handling the tasks yourself may be easier and less time-consuming, involving your children in the home can bring a sense of joy and togetherness, helping them gain confidence, a sense of accountability, and a deeper connection to their family members. 

If you’re thinking, “But where do I start?” the key is in the approach and consistency. You must be as committed to your child’s role as they are. Here are a few tips to help create helpers in the home.

  1. Keep it age appropriate. As a good rule of thumb, your child should be assigned one role or responsibility for each year of age. If they’re three years old, give them three tasks. Make sure the tasks fit their developmental level. If you make them too difficult, they could get frustrated along the way.
  2. It’s all about learning and growth. If you keep this top of mind, you’re bound to be successful. Take the time to explain and demonstrate each task, then do the task with the child the first few times. After that, let them try it on their own. It won’t be perfect, but each attempt is a step towards independence. Set expectations with your child and be clear in your ask. Take each task one at a time to avoid overwhelming your child.
  3. Your encouragement is crucial. If you tried to do something new and failed repeatedly, you, too, would begin to feel discouraged. Remember, your child may feel the same when taking on new roles and responsibilities. Your positive feedback and support can make a world of difference. Tell them what you liked and what they did well. Encourage your child along the way and keep it fun—turn up the tunes, start dancing, and get to work. As they gain more independence with the task, make sure to tell them how and why they’re doing a great job.
  4. Don’t forget the transitions. Use “first-then” sentences to break a multi-step activity into two components. “First, we’re going to put away our race cars, and then we’ll start cooking dinner.” Timers are great visual and auditory cues to help your child know when it’s time to stop what they’re doing and move on to another task. The timers should be fun, interactive, and visible for your child. The timer should be implemented when you’re ready to follow through and should be used consistently. While using them, be sure to give verbal time updates and warnings, as time lengths will vary per child and task. This tool removes the person-to-person dynamic and helps your child understand the concept of transitions.

Each of these tips is also a best-practice teacher tool, so check in with your child’s teacher to see how they may introduce roles, responsibilities, and transitions with your child that you can carry over at home. For more information and resources, visit



How Technology Can Help Solve the Youth Coaching Crisis

(NewsUSA) - Youth sports are a formative experience for many kids, and provide opportunities not only to hone athletic abilities but also to develop strong character, values, and cooperative skills that will serve them well for life. The backbone of any team is its coach.

The right coach can help kids grow both as players and people. Unfortunately, due to a shortage of trained youth sports coaches, so many volunteers – mainly parents – have had to assume the role just so their children can play, according to the National Council for Accreditation of Coaching Education, that about four million out of 7.5 million youth and school coaches in America are now classified as volunteers. And most of them cite the lack of accessible and affordable training as a reason for not sticking with it for all that long.

The young athletes suffer most from the coaching shortage. They’re the ones who the University of Maine found are five times more likely to drop out if led by an untrained coach than players led by qualified ones.

However, new technologies are emerging that can support coaches of both large organizations and small teams, making it easier for them to get access to proper trainings which will help them create the best experiences for their athletes.

TeamSnap, a premier creator of youth sports software solutions, is revolutionizing coaching nationwide with on-demand, high-quality, online resources designed to simplify coaching responsibilities and provide training modules that help kids stay engaged in sports.

Their latest offering, TeamSnap+, offers educational resources in multiple areas including:

-Team drills. Collaboration with professional organizations including Major League Baseball and Major League Soccer to develop week-by-week programs for a range of age and skill levels.

-Individual assistance. One-on-one programs and guidance to help coaches tailor training to individual athletes.

-Off the field. Take youth coaching to the next level with expert advice on discussing mental health, coaching kids with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and developing essential life skills.

"TeamSnap's new training content was developed in collaboration with the greatest sporting bodies in the world. We are setting a new standard in youth sports by providing it to the millions of coaches and parents who already use the TeamSnap app," says Peter Frintzilas, CEO of TeamSnap. "Since day one, TeamSnap has been committed to building all of the resources that coaches and parents need to feel confident during every practice and game to help their athletes realize their full potential."

The coaching tools available through the platform deliver the crucial support that coaches, volunteers, and parents need to focus on what truly counts: getting kids of all abilities into the game.  For more information, visit:

Toys For Tots Brings Hope to Children in Foster Care

(NewsUSA) - May is National Foster Care Month, and Marine Toys for Tots, America’s premier children’s Christmastime charity, continues its year-round mission of providing support to at-risk children, including those in Foster Care, through their Foster Care Initiative.  

More than 700 children in the United States enter the Foster Care system every day.  Through no fault of their own, these young people find themselves removed from everything they know, often landing in an unfamiliar setting with only a small bag for clothes and little else.

“When I became the President and CEO of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, I knew we could be more than a Christmastime charity.  Part of that intent was to assist foster families and foster children. I wanted to involve the entire community to assist us in providing items such as backpacks and educational toys, books, and other gifts,” said LtGen James Laster, CEO of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation.

In 2022, Toys for Tots launched its Foster Care Initiative to provide resources that support these children during extremely stressful and trying times. Their mission: to reduce anxiety for children in Foster Care and make a positive impact on their lives.

Marine SSgt James Caldwell knows from personal experience that seemingly small acts of kindness make a big difference. When SSgt Caldwell was a young boy, he experienced the uncertainty of Foster Care, but felt hope through the gift of a new toy from the Toys for Tots chapter in his community at Christmas.

Fast-forward to today, and SSgt Caldwell is giving back to disadvantaged children by volunteering with his local Toys for Tots chapter.

“If a kid is experiencing darkness all year long and then someone like me, dressed in a fancy uniform, comes along and says, ‘I think maybe we can help you a little bit,’ that may give them the hope they need to go on to do great things, and pay it forward,” says SSgt Caldwell.

SSgt Caldwell delivers more than just a new toy to disadvantaged children in his community – he also reminds children that brighter days are ahead, and Toys for Tots stands ready to assist whenever they need hope and joy the most.

Thanks to the generosity of donors across the Nation, Toys for Tots provided toys, books, games, and emotional comfort to more than 3,000 at-risk children, including those in Foster Care. Please join our continuing mission to help foster children find a path to a brighter future. For more information about the Toys for Tots Foster Care Initiative, visit


The American Intelligence Community Needs More Innovation

(NewsUSA) - New and emerging technology continues to transform all areas of government activity, and the United States Intelligence Community (IC) is no exception, according to experts at the Special Competitive Studies Project (SCSP), a bipartisan nonprofit organization.

As the geostrategic rivalry between the U.S. and the Peoples’ Republic of China intensifies, so does the need to harness the latest technology to improve the effectiveness of the IC. In SCSP’s second Intelligence Interim Panel Report (IPR), Intelligence Innovation: Repositioning for Future Technology Competition, experts highlight four priorities that can help the U.S. extend and retain its edge in IC with nimble use of technology and a focus on innovation.

Make the most of GenAI. Use of cutting-edge generative artificial intelligence has the potential to reinvent how intelligence is not only collected, but also analyzed, produced, disseminated, and evaluated.

Reimagine partnerships at home and abroad. Networked alliances are the future of intelligence cooperation, and technology can open up new inroads to identify domestic talent and novel intelligence tools.

Reinvent a team. Creating new public-private partnerships can help the IC access open and commercially available data and take advantage of technology being developed in the private sector.

Increase IC support. The right mix of expertise, technology tools, and private sector links can help the IC respond quickly to information and misinformation, and support strategic government communications in the digital space.

The SCSP report further recommends the need to identify and streamline communication channels across the elements of the IC and foster collaboration with any agencies that play roles in public communications, and increase expertise on the information operations used by adversaries.

For more information, including expert discussions of the report, visit

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