Editor's note: This post was created for your reading pleasure as a collaborative effort between the editorial staffs of BuzzFeed and CNN.
(CNN/BuzzFeed) -- In some ways, it has been a pretty tough year for America -- and a year for tough Americans.
The year started in the shadow of the Sandy Hook school shooting. Then, the Boston Marathon bombing brought the country to a standstill, followed by a spate of natural disasters and leading into a summer wracked with unsettling details about government spying.
But sometimes the lowest moments can bring out the best in Americans. Here are 10 stories from this year that might make you feel a little prouder to be an American this Independence Day.
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