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tv   CBS Evening News With Katie Couric  CBS  April 29, 2011 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT

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over a job well done. >> caption colorado, llc comments@captioncolorado.com >> couric: tonight, the deadliest natural disaster in the united states since hurricane katrina. >> i've never seen devastation like this. >> couric: the tornado death toll in the south tops 300 and survivors struggle to pick up the pieces of their lives. i'm katie couric in london. also tonight, a story book wedding. >> with this ring, i thee wed. >> couric: something old, something new as william and kate lead the monarchy into modern times. captioning sponsored by cbs from cbs news world headquarters in new york, this is the "cbs evening news" with katie couric. >> couric: good evening, everyone. we'll get to the royal wedding later in the broadcast, but we
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begin with the incredible devastation back home in the south. the death toll from the tornadoes has now topped 300 making it the deadliest outbreak of twisters in nearly 80 years. harry smith is in tuscaloosa, alabama, tonight and will lead us through our coverage. harry? katie, good evening... >> smith: katie, this is the deadliest natural disaster since hurricane katrina, and the scope of the devastation is hard to put into words unless you see it with your own eyes. which is what president obama did today. the president and first lady toured the splintered homes here in tuscaloosa and met with some survivors. a visit he called "heartbreaking." as the search for victims continues, at least 318 deaths have been confirmed across the south, including more than 220 of them here in alabama. 1,700 people in the state were injured and more than 600,000 homes are still without power tonight across the south.
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mark strassmann is with us here in tuscaloosa and i think it's safe to say that this is a city that is still very much in shock. >> reporter: shock and frustration, harry. when you walk through neighborhoods like this one, people ask "when's help coming?" right now they have to rely on each other. alberta city, another part of tuscaloosa's landscape of ruin. mostly low income, but never more in need. >> who wants a hot dog? >> reporter: ...than now. volunteers with sons of thunder, a christian ministry, handed out burgers, water and hope to storm victims like mike worth. when was the last time you ate? >> last time i ate was yesterday... yesterday at breakfast. >> reporter: in despair, tuscaloosa's united by a sense of community. >> it's just an opportunity to come out and try to help folks that need it. >> reporter: at least 45 people were killed in this college town. carson tinker and girlfriend ashley harrison were both hurled more than 50 yards from their flattened house.
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the university of alabama football player survived, she did not. the campus newspaper reports eight students were killed. >> it's awful. there's nothing. it took the whole house. >> reporter: jessica geise says four students were inside this leveled house. only one survived. and after the storm, their neighbor and friend jarrad jackson remembers the survivor was in deep trauma. >> he was walking around crying, yelling for them and we walked over there and helped him, trying to scream their names-- see. >> reporter: and? >> didn't hear anything. >> reporter: in that same alberta neighborhood where we were, right after the president left, an amazing find. volunteers helped rescue a family trapped inside an apartment building, including a teenage girl with cerebral palsy. harry? >> smith: that's a great story. mark strassmann, thanks. hundreds, even thousands of people were hurt quite badly wednesday night, overwhelming hospitals in a five-state area.
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dean reynolds visited the trauma unit at the university of alabama, birmingham, hospital. >> forever we didn't know how deep we were. >> reporter: sitting beside her hospitalized son, connie mays recalled the day her house was leveled. >> i thought we were buried alive and that nobody would ever find us. >> reporter: somewhere and somehow in this pile of rubble at 1428 fourteenth street, she and her family survived, wedged under a wall of bricks. >> yeah, my wrist... my whole arm is like caved in. >> reporter: connor's arm was broken, his chest fractured and his spine compressed-- the kind of crushing injuries that sent 150 people to this hospital after the twisters struck. trauma that traumatized even the staff. >> you have to realize folks are seeing these large numbers of really seriously injured patients. in some cases the staff members had family members that were here. >> reporter: and the victims kept coming. >> we had to create a new intensive care unit out of the recovery room space.
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>> reporter: and what was it like? what was the scene here? >> i use the term "controlled chaos." >> reporter: and at that hospital we visited here in birmingham where there are still 23 people in intensive care, we were told that some of the doctors lost their own homes and others were treating their own relatives. harry? >> smith: dean reynolds in birmingham tonight. thank you. north of birmingham, in the town of coleman, people there have been told they may have to wait a week until power is restored there. earlier in the day today, a lot of people lined up in a parking lot for free water and diapers. thousands of bags of ice were handed out and many waited hours to buy gasoline from stations powered by generators. here in the bible belt, people believe things happen for a reason. they believe everything is part of god's plan-- even the tornadoes that hit here wednesday night. rosa lee taylor picks through
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the ruin of what used to be her home. she was in her bedroom when the storm hit. >> my soul is saved and i was prepared to die and actually i thought i was going to die. it was just by the grace of god that i'm here right now. >> reporter: her home collapsed on top of her, protected only by a few pillows, she said, and angels. >> all the debris that was on me, i wasn't even able to move and i know it was just like angel moved the stone from the tomb, god moved that debris. >> reporter: luck? fate? never. it's all god's will. >> never as long as i live forget april 27, 2011, and i never, never will forget to give god his praise. i saw god's mighty work in action. >> reporter: but what the lord giveth, he also taketh away. pastor t.l. lewis has served the bethel missionary baptist church for 29 years. the massive sanctuary has been destroyed. >> what's more important to me
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is all these homes that you see out here destroyed. what's more important? those people, not this building. because the church is not property, the church is people. >> reporter: and the people are hurting, even the pastor whose faith is being tested in ways he never imagined. >> i can't stand here and tell you i don't hurt. i hurt every day. but i got too much evidence to not have confidence and to know that this, too, shall pass. >> reporter: surviving the storms that came through here on wednesday night may be, for many of these people, the ultimate test of faith. katie, back to you in london. >> couric: harry, thank you so much. meanwhile, it's just begun to rain here. it held off all day, for which william and kate said they were grateful. theirs was a traditional wedding with family and close friends attending, and perhaps hundreds of millions of people watching all around the world.
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nearly 2,000 people streamed into westminster abbey, including a sports star, a pop star, a former and current prime minister. there were members of the extended royal family and foreign dignitaries. but most of them were actually friends of the bride and groom. and there was no shortage of hats. some traditional, some architectural like the one worn by princess beatrice, daughter of prince andrew and sarah ferguson who, incidentally, wasn't invited. walking down the red carpet in an abbey transformed by the bride herself into an english country garden, kate middleton had a regal air even before she officially became royalty. the palace called the ceremony the epitome of britishness, but it was also intensely personal.
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the hymn "guide me oh thou great redeemer" that marked such sadness at diana's funeral was resurrected to honor her at this joyful occasion. >> be who god meant you to be. >> reporter: the bishop of london ended his address with a prayer the couple wrote themselves. >> strengthened by our union, help us to serve and comfort those who suffer. >> couric: and a specially written fanfare was performed by trumpeters to the royal air force, a nod to william's career as a search-and-rescue pilot. >> would thou have this man to thy wedded husband? >> reporter: as the couple took their vows, kate refrained from using the word "obey." >> to love and to cherish... >> couric: a statement about their equal partnership. ring, singular, william won't be wearing one and had trouble slipping kate's on her finger. >> with this ring, i thee wed. >> couric: as the congregation
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witness their union... >> i pronounce that they be man and wife together. >> couric: ... the crowd outside couldn't contain itself. then the moment nearly a million people in the streets had been waiting for-- a glimpse of the royal couple. everyone was caught up in the excitement. >> and now as my camera goes up, we see them! unbelievable! >> couric: and even blase bohemians gathered in a pub couldn't resist the spirit, or spirits, of the moment. >> although people are tremendously happy for will and kate, there are a few broken hearts, right? >> absolutely. it should have been me. it should have been me! >> couric: a tide of humanity rolled into the square outside buckingham palace. the sheer number of them surprising even the princess bride. and the newlywed couple sealed their future, and the future of
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the british monarchy, not with one kiss but two. (cheers and applause) in the months since william and kate announced their engagement, the curiosity grew and grew about one aspect of this wedding. of course we're talking about the dress. the very formally excited michelle miller is here and michelle, if there's one word people are using to describe her gown, it's "wow." >> reporter: "wow" is right. it was the most closely guarded secret of the wedding. what would kate middleton's dress look like? the answer came this morning. when she stepped out of the car, the bride looked regal-- every inch the princess she was about to become. >> the dress was spectacular. >> reporter: for months fashion editors like paula reed played a guessing game, not just about the dress, but who would design
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it. sara burton of alexander mcqueen won the commission, and the dress' long lace sleeves and simple lines carried echoes of an earlier commoner who married royalty. >> in a way it reminded me of grace kelly's dress. it's a classic wedding dress and i really think your wedding dress is the last place you want to make a fashion statement, because you don't want to be laughing at your pictures 20 years down the line. >> reporter: a very different design from the elaborate dress william's mother-- lady diana spencer-- wore 30 years ago. that was designed by david emanuel. >> this was dramatic in its simplicity. i was expecting it to be far more over the top, and i'm delighted it wasn't. >> reporter: the dress was almost entirely made from british fabrics. the lace appliques included roses, thistles, daffodils and shamrocks-- representing scotland, wales and ireland along with england. >> they really wanted to involve on a very intimate way just the beautiful things, the things we need to treasure about our
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culture. >> reporter: and the wedding guests we talked to considered it a hit. >> absolutely beautiful. >> reporter: really? >> really, really lovely. >> very special. >> the dress was gorgeous, wasn't it? not that i'm very good on dresses, mind. >> reporter: unlike diana, no 25-foot-long train for kate. katie, hers came in at under nine feet. >> couric: she really did look beautiful. >> gorgeous. >> couric: michelle miller. michelle, thank you. still ahead here on the "cbs evening news," americans who would have given anything to see that dress in person. they were here in london today. but up next, chief foreign correspondent lara logan speaks out about the day she was brutally assaulted in egypt. lts? spectacular plants without all the weeds. with miracle-gro shake 'n feed plus weed preventer. just a few shakes stops weeds before they start.
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speaking publicly about the attack, which she says was merciless. in a "60 minutes" interview, lara tells scott pelley she thought she would die. >> our camera battery went down and we had to stop for a moment and suddenly baha looks at me and says "we've got to get out of here." baha is not happy here. >> he's egyptian, he speaks arabic and he can hear what the crowd is saying. >> yes. >> he understands what no one else in the crew understands? >> that's right. i thought "not only am i going to die here, but it's going to be a torturous death that's going to go on forever and ever and ever." when i thought "i'm going to die here" and my next thought was "i can't believe i just let them kill me. that that was as much fight as i had. that i just gave in and i gave up on my children so easily. how could you do that? how could you do that? i thought you were stronger than that?" >> couric: the complete
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for the big event. >> reporter: as katherine and william were saying "i will..." >> i will. >> i will. >> reporter: many americans on the royally packed streets of london were saying "i won't"... hardly see a thing. did you see anything? >> i saw kate. >> reporter: unless they had a periscope. >> i saw a top of a car and a little white, and my camera got a little picture, which was really exciting. >> reporter: a little white meaning a little white wedding dress? >> yes. >> yes. >> reporter: when the bride finally revealed her dress... >> so, we have pictures of the dress. do you want to see? we had to show the crowd. they could only hear the service on loudspeakers. and sleeves. >> and sleeves and a long train and a beautiful long train. >> can you see it? you don't need a t.v. screen. we'll just print stuff out. (laughter) >> reporter: after a 24-hour campout, our red-hatted americans swear they were spotted by prince harry. >> oh, my gosh!
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oh, my gosh! >> i saw him! >> my gosh, he looked at us! >> reporter: they then fought their way to the front gate of buckingham... >> we're so close. we never thought we'd get this close. >> reporter: ...to see the duke and duchess seal the deal. >> it was a lengthy lip lock. >> reporter: something charlotte barbato from boston was also determined to see. from the crowd, she had no view so we made room for her at our perch. oh, look at them! >> reporter: she's waited 30 years since another royal kiss to see this one in person. >> oh! it's just unbelievable. it is a dream come true. >> reporter: for a boston commoner and british royals alike. ben tracy, cbs news, london. >> couric: and coming up next, driving the monarchy into the 21st century.
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>> couric: and finally tonight, >> couric: and finally tonight, the wedding of william and kate was steeped in british history, but mark phillips tells us this new generation of royals is putting its own modern touches on tradition. mark? >> reporter: katie, it was a traditional service in an historic abbey, but this was also a new kind of wedding for the royals-- an almost normal one. it may be his father's car, but this was not his father's wedding. william and katherine took the sporty route home from the palace between post-wedding receptions using prince charles' aston martin d.b.-6, with new plates for the occasion. stuffy royals aren't supposed to do this sort of thing, which is exactly the point. even in the grandeur of the abbey where royals are crowned, marry, and are buried, this was the unstuffy wedding. william arriving early so he could schmooze with the guests. prince harry keeping his brother
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loose as they waited for the bride. william appearing to tell kate "you look beautiful." or joking to his new father-in- law, "we're supposed to just have a small family affair affair." >> you have both made your decision today. i will. >> reporter: and even as the now-married couple stepped into the hundred-year-old carriage, they did what normal couples do. "are you happy?" she appears to ask. "yes, are you?" he seems to reply. she nods and says yes. and with perhaps a million people waiting to see them and perhaps billions watching on t.v., one final check. "you okay?" a thoroughly modern couple for a gradually modernizing monarchy. >> they perhaps symbolize the future which is going to be a take away monarchy. they go get pizza and sit in front of the television and watch movies. they're leading a modern life.
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>> reporter: and they'll lead that life for some time as william is still second in line to the throne after his father and playing his role. "one more" he says. "okay, let's go." >> somehow in marrying kate middleton, the next-but-one heir to the throne looks as if he's really linked in with the ordinary joe in middle britain. it's great. it will keep the monarchy going for another hundred years or so, i would guess. >> reporter: the royal house of windsor has survived by changing with the times only as much as it has to and, katie, it's done it again. >> couric: mark phillips. mark, thanks so much. i'll have much more about this day here in london on a cbs news special "the royal wedding, modern majesty" tonight at 8:00, 7:00 central. that's the "cbs evening news" for tonight. i'm katie couric. thank you for watching. good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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