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Woman survives nearly 30 days stranded in the mountains

A Czech woman was stranded in the New Zealand mountains for nearly 30 days before being rescued.

Pavlina Pižova  traveled to New Zealand with her partner in late July for a hike on the Routeburn Track. Only days into the journey, the pair got lost due to extreme snowfall and winter conditions.

"As you can imagine, the last month was harrowing for me and my and my partner's families," she said at a news conference.

>> Read more trending stories  

Pižova's partner, Ondrej Petr, reportedly fell off the trail they were hiking and died. His body was recovered Friday.

Pižova continued on her own, hoping to find shelter.

"During this time, I was extremely cold, exhausted and my feet were frozen," she said.

The 33-year-old spent two days in the open before she found a warden's hut along Lake Mackenzie. She said there were avalanches outside and knew it was best to stay under cover.

Before the trip, the pair didn't tell anyone of their hiking plans and didn't take a personal locator beacon, which Pižova said was a mistake.

Authorities found Pižova on Wednesday. She thanked her rescuers at a news conference the following day.

Olympic discus thrower auctions his silver medal for a boy with cancer

An Olympic discus thrower has auctioned off his silver medal to raise money for a child's cancer treatment.

>> Watch the video from Newsy

Poland's Piotr Malachowski won silver at the Olympics this month. After his win, Malachowski auctioned off his medal on eBay to the highest bidder.

Malachowski says the mother of a 3-year-old boy named Olek wrote to him asking for help so her son, who has retinoblastoma, can get treatment.

Retinoblastoma is a form of malignant eye cancer that primarily affects children under 5 years old. It can affect one or both eyes and can be hereditary.

Reports say the total cost of Olek's surgery is $126,000, and Malachowski says the treatment can only be done in New York.

He told his followers on Facebook about Olek last week in hopes of raising funds for the boy's treatment. The discus thrower took silver in both the 2008 and 2016 Olympic games. >> Click here to see his Facebook postZdobycie medalu olimpijskiego to dla sportowca spełnienie życiowych marzeń. Oczywiście najcenniejszy jest ten złoty....Posted by Piotr Małachowski on Friday, August 19, 2016

According to ESPN, the medal auction had raised around $19,000 when it ended on Tuesday.

The discus thrower says the funds he gets from the the auction will go directly to Olek's treatment. The Olympian wrote: "In Rio, I fought for gold. Today, I appeal to all — let's fight together for something that is even more valuable. The health of this fantastic boy."

Malachowski isn't the only Olympian to auction off his medal for a cause. U.S. swimmer Anthony Ervin sold his to bolster aid relief efforts after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. And famed Ukrainian boxer Wladimir Klitschko sold his medal from the 1996 Atlanta Olympics for more than $1 million as part of a fundraising event for his children's charity.

>> Read more trending stories

In another Facebook post, Malachowski reported the goal for the fundraiser had been met.

Olek also has a page on the Polish charity site SiePomaga. As of Saturday morning, more than 12,000 people donated to the cause.

Driver distracted by 'Pokemon Go' kills pedestrian in Japan

A Japanese farmer playing "Pokemon Go" while driving struck a pair of pedestrians earlier this week, killing one in Japan's first reported death linked to the wildly popular augmented-reality game, according to multiple reports.

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Keiji Goo, 39, was driving a small truck in Tokushima prefecture, on the island of Shikoku, Tuesday night when he struck two women as they were crossing the road, The Washington Post reported. Sachiko Nakanishi, 72, was killed and Kayoko Ikawa, 60, suffered a broken hip.

"I was playing 'Pokemon Go' while driving, so I didn't really see what was in front of me," Goo told police, according Japan's NHK.

Police arrested Goo on a negligent driving charge, Reuters reported. Authorities did not immediately say whether the man would face additional charges.

A spokesman for Niantic Inc., the company that developed "Pokemon Go" alongside the Pokemon Company, told Reuters a warning was added to the app to warn players against playing the game while driving.

It's not the first time the game, which has players attempting to find and battle virtual "Pocket Monsters" in real-time, has been linked to car accidents. According to the Post, Japanese authorities wrote 1,140 tickets for traffic violations related to the game in the month it's been out in the country – 95 percent of which were due to playing while driving.

A spokesman for Nintendo shared condolences for the family of Nakanishi while speaking with Reuters, adding that, "Pokemon Company and Niantic endeavor to create an environment where people can play the game safely and we will continue to do that."

Top French court overturns burqini ban

A top French court has overturned a controversial ban on Muslim-friendly burqini bathing suits.

>> Read more trending stories

The Council of State ruled Friday that a ban imposed in the town of Villeneuve-Loubet "seriously and clearly illegally breached fundamental freedoms to come and go, freedom of beliefs and individual freedom."

But the decision is expected to set a legal precedent for about 30 other French cities and towns that have similar bans on the full-body swimsuit.

Related: Is France's burqini ban here to stay?

 Officials say the burqini ban on public beaches was in response to growing concerns over terror threats.

But critics denounced the move as discriminatory and illegal. And others worry the bans could make tensions between cultures worse.

Still, one mayor on the French Mediterranean island of Corsica has already vowed to keep the ban in place.

He told BFM-TV, "Here the tension is very, very, very strong, and I won't withdraw it."

The Council of State is set to make a final decision regarding the legality of other bans at a later date.

Billionaire Richard Branson bruised, bloodied in bike crash

Richard Branson’s taste for adventure is well-known, but the billionaire businessman admits he thought he was going to die after flying head-first off a bicycle onto a concrete road in the British Virgin Islands.

Branson, 66, posted images of his bloodied and bruised face on social media Friday. He wrote in a post on the Virgin website that his cheek was severely damaged, and that his knee, chin, shoulder and body suffered torn ligaments and severe cuts in the crash that happened earlier this week.

"My life was literally flashing before my eyes," he wrote. "I really thought I was going to die.

>> Read more trending stories 

Branson credits his bicycle helmet for protecting him from more catastrophic injuries.

His bicycle went over a cliff and was recovered, but it was destroyed.

Branson wrote that he is on the road to recovery, and that his biggest complaint is having to drink tea through a straw.

Over the years, the billionaire daredevil has endured many injuries and brushes with death. Keeping with his optimistic attitude, Branson said about his biking mishap, “My attitude has always been, if you fall flat on your face, at least you’re moving forward. ”

7 things to know now: Nuns murdered; college football starts; 'DWTS' cast; MTV video awards

Here's a roundup of news trending across the nation and world today.

What to know now:

1. Nuns slain: Two nuns were found murdered in their home in Durant, Miss., Thursday, the apparent victims of a break-in. Law enforcement officials say they have  recovered a car that was missing from the home. The sisters, both 68, were stabbed to death.

2. Lochte charged: Police in Brazil have charge Olympic medal winner Ryan Lochte with filing a false robbery report. Lochte claimed that he and three other American swimmers were stopped on the way back to the Olympic Village after attending a party and robbed by men claiming to be police. It was later revealed that Lochte and the others stopped at a gas station, vandalized the building and was confronted by security officers there.

3. U.S. boat fires warning shots: Three Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps boats made a run at a U.S. Navy patrol boat in the Persian Gulf Wednesday, prompting the U.S. craft to fire warning shots at the Iranian vessels. The shots were fired into the water as one Iranian boat came within 200 yards of the USS Squall. The Iranian boat then turned back.

4. College football begins: If you can’t wait another day for the college football season to start, you’re in luck. It starts Friday night when California takes on Hawaii in Sydney, Australia. The season gets underway in earnest next weekend, but for the college football junkie – any game at any time is alright.

5. "DWTS" cast rumors: The names of some of the stars set to take a spin around the dance floor on “Dancing with the Stars” are leaking out. Rumored to be among the next crop of would-be Fred Astairs and Ginger Rogers is music producer Babyface (Kenneth Edmonds), “Little Women: LA” star Terra Jole, Ryan Lochte and Amber Rose. The official announcement of the cast will come next week on “Good Morning America.” “Dancing With the Stars” premieres Monday, Sept. 12.

And one more

The 2016 MTV Video Music Awards are set for Sunday night. The always entertaining show will, of course, have a jaw-dropping moment or two. Remember Kanye grabbing the mic from Taylor Swift?  Brittney Spears and that snake (not Kanye, a real snake)?  Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley in the most uncomfortable attempt at a kiss since …,  well, actually that was probably the most uncomfortable attempt at a kiss. The show starts at 9 p.m. Sunday.

In case you missed it

Bomb blast outside police headquarters kills several, injuries dozens in Turkey

At least 11t people died and dozens of people were injured Friday when a car bomb exploded outside the headquarters of police in Cizre, in southeastern Turkey, according to multiple reports.

>> Read more trending stories

The Associated Press reported 11 people, all police officers, died as a result of the bombing and said 78 others were wounded. Unnamed hospital sources initially told Reuters the blast claimed at least nine lives and left 64 people injured.

Videos and photographs taken in the area of the explosion showed billowing plumes of smoke around the heavily damaged police building.

A gunfight broke out between the bombers and police after the blast, Al Jazeera reported.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.

Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency said the attack was carried out by militants with the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK. The group has carried out a string of car bomb attacks on police and military in recent months.

Violence between the PKK and the security forces resumed last year, after a fragile two-year peace process between the government and militant group collapsed. Hundreds of security force members have been killed since.

The PKK is considered a terror organization by Turkey and its allies.

Cizre is in Sirnak province, a province that has a largely Kurdish population and borders Syria and Iraq.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Is France's burqini ban here to stay?

The ban on burqinis in French towns will either be completely legalized nationwide or struck down Friday. The State Council, France's version of our Supreme Court, will decide whether one of the controversial bans currently recognized in more than a dozen towns is constitutional. 

>> Read more trending stories

To catch you up, burqinis are used by Muslim women who still want to cover up in accordance with their beliefs when they go to the beach or pool. Bans have popped up in towns all over the country, and one was upheld by a lower court Monday.  

The ban before the court doesn't actually mention the word burqini, like most of them. It's actually a ban on anyone who wears swimwear that displays "religious affiliation" and "could create risks of trouble to public order." 

Proponents of the ban see it as a way to protect the country's secular culture, in some cases claiming it presents a hygiene issue or that the clothing holds women back. France's prime minister told press: "It's the translation of a political project for a counter-society based on woman's enslavement. ... That is not compatible with the values of France and the Republic." 

But many are calling the bans discriminatory and examples of hatred against Muslims. A lawyer with the League of Human Rights called it "a serious and manifestly illegal infringement of several fundamental freedoms: freedom of opinion, religion, dress, to come and go." Others worry the bans will make the tensions among cultures even worse. 

While it's possible the high court will strike down the ban, thus setting a national precedent, it's not far-fetched to imagine it standing up in court. Because of its secular laws, the country has already banned the burqua in public while religious symbols, including headscarves, are banned in public schools.

Woman says grandparents married 62 years are forced to be apart

A granddaughter in Surrey, Canada, is upset with her health care system because it is forcing her grandparents to live apart from each other after being married for 62 years.

Ashley Bartyik posted a photo on Facebook Tuesday of her grandparents, Wolfram Gottschalk, 83, and Anita Gottschalk, 81, wiping away tears.

>> Read more trending stories

"This is the saddest photo I have ever taken," Bartyik said in the photo caption.

Bartyik said her grandparents are unable to live together in the same care home because of "backlogs and delays by our healthcare system," and lack of space in the care facility.

Bartyik said the system "(has) the power to have my grandpa moved to the same care facility as my grandmother" and the situation is made worse by Wolfram Gottschalk's developing dementia and his lymphoma diagnosis.

CTV News reported that, according to Bartyik, she has received hundreds of private messages from strangers ranging from thank-yous to advice on how to navigate the health care system for her grandparents.

In a statement to CBC News, Fraser Health spokeswoman Tasleem Juma said the health care service provider is "exploring options other than this particular facility that his wife is at now."

"Certainly when the scope is narrowed to one facility, it becomes difficult to place them there, because we have to wait for another bed to become available," Juma said.

Juma told CTV News the company will "continue to work to reunite this couple."

"We certainly understand how heartbreaking this is for the family. It’s upsetting for us as well," she said.

But Bartyik said in a Facebook post Thursday that she and her family "have not received one single phone call from them in the past 8 months that this has been going on."

Friends please read! This is The saddest photo I have ever taken. This is my Omi and my Opi. As you can see they are...Posted by Ashley Kaila B on Tuesday, August 23, 2016

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