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Woman travels country to collect stories of kindness

Mary Latham says her mother once told her in times of tragedy, you can always find "more good."

For the last two years, Mary Latham has traveled the country in her mother's old Subaru on a mission to collect stories, both big and small. 

"More Good is a road trip to every single state in the country to compile stories of acts of human kindness and inspiring people to put into a book for hospital waiting rooms," Latham said. 

She said the inspiration for this project is two-fold. 

In 2013, after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, her friend experienced an act of kindness in a Starbucks. That day, someone in the coffee shop line decided to pay for everyone's coffee as a small gesture of gentleness.

"It inspired a conversation between me and my mother where I was very focused on the shooting and all of the terrible things happening out there," Latham said. "She said there would always be tragedies and terrible things in our lives but there would always be more good if we look for it."

Not long after that conversation, Latham's mother passed away and it was in that moment she decided to do something. 

"I just took what she said and ran with it," she said.

So far, she has traveled to 35 states, including Tennessee. In each state, she stays with a stranger and uses social media to find people willing to tell their stories. 

But Latham said her adventures go beyond those shared with her online.

"Every second you spend in the corner of a coffee shop reading, you could be missing an opportunity to connect with an amazing person who has an amazing story," she said. "We all have stories."

After the holiday, she plans to head back to Knoxville to continue her journey of finding good across the nation. 

In the meantime, if you'd like to share your story or learn more about More Good, she encourages you to go to her website.

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