tv Sunday Today With Willie Geist NBC February 11, 2018 6:00am-7:01am PST
♪ the united states of america. >> we are spending money like it's out of control. >> we all could have done better in dealing with the situation. this is one for the record book. >> so the philadelphia eagles, the long drought is over. good evening, from pyeongchang, south korea, site of the xxiii olympic games. welcome to the special edition of "sunday today." i'm willie geist. welcome atop my personal ski lodge. the united states has its first
gold medal in the winter olympics. the 17-year-old winner is here live. red gerard in the slopestyle finals to win a place on top of the podium. he's one of the gold medalist in american history. you'll meet him in just a moment. and coming up later today, we'll see american phenom mikaela shiffrin in her first ride. jamie aerndzson defending her 2013 title in the women's slopestyle final. we're 90 miles east of seoul, the capital of south korea and just 50 miles north of the border of north korea. whose participation here in pyeongchang, both athletic and diplomatic has been one of the big stories in the game so far. we'll talk to chuck todd about that side of the olympics in a with the. bells president trump doubling down amid two top administration officials forced to resign this week over allegations of domestic abuse. and then later, a "sunday sitdown" with the american ski
jumping star whose olympic dreams four years ago were scuttled by a bad knee. now sarah hendrickson is happy and healthy here in pyeongchang and describing to us mortals what it's like to fly. >> three seconds in flight you're up there and perfectly still. what does it feel like? peacefulness. that feeling that time stops. and you actually have time to have thoughts in the air. a "sunday sitdown" with american ski jumper sarah hendrickson. plus, a story from the korean war with tom brokaw later in the show. but let's begin with team usa's first gold medal. an incredible aerial show as 17-year-old red gerard put the united states on the medal board in the snowboarding slopestyle event. we'll talk to red in just a moment. but first, my but natalie morales is here in the lodge with me with the overnight olympic highlights. natalie, good to see you. >> thanks for inviting me into
your lodge, willie. good morning. you'll remember four years ago it was sochi that the american faith catsenberg was the first winner in slopestyle. a champion, american, who isn't old enough to vote stunning the world and winning team usa's first gold medal of the games. >> he goes huge. >> reporter: exploding off jumps. and twisting through the air. >> there he puts it down! >> reporter: 17-year-old red gerard delivered team usa its first olympic medal of the game. and it's gold. getting off to a rough start. >> oh! >> reporter: the snowboarder stunned crowds here in pyeongchang, in the men's slopestyle event, putting on a spectacular show in its final run. >> up and over. >> reporter: the first-time olympic champion from colorado outperforming canada's max harris and marcus morris. >> honestly, i was psyched. i didn't care if it was first,
second, third. >> reporter: gerard's mother couldn't be prouder. embracing her son after his golden win while fans celebrate back home in the states. back at olympic park, team usa took to the ice looking to medal in the figure skating competition. american ice dancer maya and alex shibutani, the pair dazzled leading americans into first place on monday. >> i felt like the skate was actually really good. we've been training so hard and to be out on olympic ice for the first time, we were really happy with it. >> so clean. >> reporter: and illinois native brady t brady tonnell but it on display. >> i let the plussic take me. >> a shot! >> reporter: and as the games rang on here in pyeongchang, the north koreans looked to still
the spotlight with their important clearing section. they danced and sang in unison as the hockey team was drubbed by the swiss. the squad trying to distract from the north's brutal regime, as the world comes together to compete for olympic glory. some events had to be postponed because the weather isn't great. high winds forced the cancellation of the ladies qualifying event and postponed at men's downhill. let's take a look at the medal count, you see norway leading. it's early, willie. >> united states has plenty of time. natalie is going to stick around for the highs and lows of the week. we'll see you in a minute. we're thrilled to have red gerard with us this morning. the 17-year-old won the first olympic gold at the games. red, congratulations. >> thank you so much. >> you were sharing the medal with natalie and i.
i couldn't believe how heavy it is. how does it feel around your neck? >> my neck is getting a little tired. it's heavy. >> one the hazards of being a gold medal winner. neck pain. >> for sure. >> you're an young guy that doesn't follow the olympics, you're an x games guy. or dad said you weren't that big into the olympics. do you get how big of a deal it is to win? >> oh, yeah, after i got on the podium, i'm now realizing how big the olympics actually is. >> did you know you're the youngest man to win a gold medal in the olympic games since 1928, a guy named billy fist. a bobsledder. >> i heard about that. that hits me a lot. i'm pretty happy on that to be young and win a medal for sure. >> let's talk about your run. because your first two you weren't happy with. >> yeah. >> you came into that third run, you were in 11th or 12th place.
and the 12th guy was out so you're basically last place. does that feel like pressure four? >> for me, i wanted to run. it would have been crappy to fly all the way out here and not run two runs. my first run i had problems. it was windy. and the wind was messing with me but then i got a nice run. >> tell me about the move everybody is talking about, backside, triple court 1540 i don't know what that is, how does that work? >> it's three flips, a couple spins in the mix. getting a little dizzy doing it. you just kind of land. it's crazy. >> you have a contingent of i think 18 people, right? >> yeah. >> you're the youngest of five brothers, two sisters, seven kids and everybody's here? >> yeah. >> what's the party been like today? >> it's been crazy -- actually i didn't wake up, i was on the bus ride to the mountain. i woke up to shotguns of beers
because they were already up. >> they were already passed out. >> yeah. >> my mom and dad were there. >> two left standing. >> i don't know if you saw it, you grew up when you were young in ohio. your hometown, rocky river, inside a bar. we got video to show you. they had a watch party and they went knits. >> yeah, i heard about this. i didn't know about it. it's mind blowing. >> what do you think when you see that? >> i'm just happy people showed up. if i would have known about that i would have been stressed out. >> 17 years old and the youngest gold medal winner since 1928. congratulations, my man. go have fun with your family. >> thanks. as we celebrate world class athletes here in pyeongchang, it's been a busy week back home in the white house. president trump criticized for his apparent defense of two of his aides who resigned amid
domestic abuse allegations. president trump expressed support for former senior aide rob porter who his ex-wives explained abuse in detail. on saturday president trump tweeted this, quote, people's lives are being shattered sand destroyed by new allegation. some are true and some are false. some are old and some are new. he went on is there no such thing any longer as due process. chuck todd is nbc's political director and moderate of "meet the press". chuck, walk us through this. there are reports that chief of staff john kelly knew about the alleged abuse in the fall. that the white house counsel knew far before that. donald trump saying he learned recently and made that decision. came out and said porter says he's innocent. i have to remind you he says
he's innocent. is there a fallout because of this? is there any chance that john kelly leaves the white house? >> let me start with the john kelly part of the question. i think he's vulnerable here the president was getting impatient with john kelly, starting to call around and getting antsy about him, before this week. i think this week could be one of the final straws for john kelly. and it could simply mean that the president is just tired of john kelly. if you look at his pattern going back to the campaign. three campaign managers. he's on his second chief of staff. basically the average tenure of being the president's right hand is about six to nine months and john kelly is on month seven. but the fact of the matter is, this does look like as if john kelly was afraid of losing somebody he thought was a competent employee. and it's go difficult to get competent people to agree to work in that west wing, that they overlooked a lot of red flags about rob porter. >> there's no question about it.
chuck, i have to say, being here in south korea, the relationship by north korea and the united states role, it hangs over everything. the sister of kim jong-un here making an offer to the president for the meeting. you had the north koreans marching with the yaunified fla. there's a lot of skepticism here. what is president trump thinking about? >> well, i think vice president pence has been his symbolic grimaces, i think, are there to show you what the president thinks. his decision not to stand for -- as the korean team came in. so, i think you do see ways that i think vice president pence is trying to express their displeasure, i think with all of this. and not wanting to look like they're at all seeming complimentary to the north koreans. but i think one thing americans
need to remember, south koreans have a different mind-set about wanting unification some day. i think they always want to be hopeful. but i think all of us are a little more realistic here and realizing this is probably nothing more than a pr stunt by the north koreans because the olympics are right in their back yard and the world is watching. >> and south korea saying we've seen this movie before as pop agendgan propaganda. chuck will be joined by mark short and republican senator jeff flake of arizona an outspoken critic of president trump. headlines and breaking news out of russia where a passenger plane has crashed killing all 71 people on board. it went down near moscow after taking off that city's airport. and three people were killed when a sightseeing helicopter crashed at the grand canyon saturday evening. four people on board were injured. no word from police what exactly
went wrong there. a man is under arrest after he ran on to the runway at los angeles international airport. a southwest captain saw the man who managed to reach into a wheel well of a plane and pulled a fire extinguisher line and causing a fire alarm to get off. police say the man scaled the fence to get on the runway. he was arrested just minutes after he was spotted. >> well, dylan is here in now, it is pretty cold outside. today is the beginning of a nice cooling trend in the bay area. we are at more seasonal temperatures for this time of the year. san jose right now at 46 degrees, mountain view 38, santa cruz 38 degrees, san francisco 45 degrees and we are expecting more seasonal temperatures each through the afternoon. we are talking upper 60s. the temperature trend for santa clara does show clear skies and temperatures in the 60s by 12:00.
>> all right. thank you very much. straight ahead, the highs and lows of the week, including the return of the breakout star of the rio summer olympics. the lubed up tae kwon do guy is now the lubed up cross country skier guy and still not wearing a shirt. double takes as donald trump and kim jong-un are spotted together mingling among the fans before tossed out of the joint. plus, thomas brokaw sits down with an old friend who fought in the korean war before he challenged president nixon for the race to be president. >> were you prepared for what you saw when you hit the ground? >> no. >> it's coming up on "sunday today" from pyeongchang, south korea. and as we head to break, our photo of the week the astonishing sight of a mannequin named starman behind the wheel of a tesla car, on a spacex
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>> the old crew is back. the opening ceremonies, highlights including the north and south korean delegations marching into the stadium together under a unified flag as leaders of the two countries technically still at war since 1950 applauded together from their seats then there was team usa, the largest delegation from any country in history in the olympic winter games. walking proudly together to the 2012 sci hit gangnam style. and some wore suits with fringe on them, reminds them of "dumb & dumber." >> i've giving it to team usa. sorry, jim. >> the moment of the night, atry u a triumphant and oily pita taufatofua. the ripped up athlete was talk
of the opening ceremony in rio when he led his nation into the stadium. guess what, he learned a new sport, pita taufatofua returned as the flag bearer for the pyeongchang pyeongchagame, he's country skier now. and he went shirtless and lubed up for the opening ceremony. pita is only the second athlete to compete for tonga. >> that was painful. i was there. it was zero degrees. >> i'm told he made his appearance, he ducked out and they put a jacket over him. >> i should say so. he was also wearing flip-flops. >> nothing else. >> he's committed to his brand. the first logos to the fact that fake president donald trump and fake leader kim jong-un were tossed from the opening ceremonies by security during their fake goodwill tour. a pair of trump and kim
impersonators were seen strolling the streets getting chummy. they said they were there to display peace. they made an appearance at the olympic stadium friday and as crowds gathered around the two actors, they were escorted away. trump guy, american, kim buy australian, the really sister of kim jong-un and mike pence were allowed to stay. >> did you see those two guys? >> i actually saw the jooukim jong-un he was pretty good. the next high extended high extended to the city of philadelphia after the super bowl victory a week ago today. the philadelphia eagles up set tom brady and the patriots. the reaction of philly fans to the win tells you just how long they've been waiting since the team's last title in 1960. a tulsa sports anchor who is a huge eagles fan heard that his
team had won the super bowl live on the air. >> okay, late breaking -- they won it! they won it! [ laughter ] >> oh. harold, harold, they say no cheering in the press box, but harold can cheer all he wants. just the beginning of the celebration on thursday nearly 1 million eagles fans lined the streets of philadelphia for a hero's parade. the scene of green eventually gathered around the rocky steps in philadelphia park. pro bowl player jason kelce dressed in i'm not sure went full professional wrestler in his fiery speech. >> hungry dogs run the best. everybody wanted more. that's why we're up here today. that's why we're the first team in eagles history to hold that
trophy! >> you got to love this team. the fans were going crazy. they were eating it up. >> that's commitment. >> i still don't get the outfit but i'm going with it. >> i buy it. >> our final low comes from the world of football. wednesday was national signing day when the country's best high school football players announced where they'll play college ball. a big crazy televised thing. jacob copeland say star receiver from pensacola, florida. as he gets ready to make his announcement you see his mother on the left of screen wearing an alabama or tennessee hat. two choices, alabama or tennessee well, her son went a third route and she was not having it. mom grabbed her bag and walks out midsentence from her son. she did return eventually to sign her son's letter. look at her get her bag. she walks right across the camera.
it became a viral star. jacob wrote on twitter what my mama did today was hilarious, if you knew her personally, that's what she does, she puts on a show. >> tough love. natalie, thanks so much. great to see you. >> great to be here. next, the "sunday sitdown" someone who learned how to fly at the age of 7 is now soaring into the winter olympics. team usa ski jumping champion sarah hendrickson and what it feels like to take flight and unfinished business from four years ago. and then the olympic story that began when one vermont father decided to personally build a ski slope in his family's backyard. his daughter won a gold medal. his grandson is here in south korea trying to do the same. you can head to facebook for a facebook live chat with me and natalie in just two minutes. we'll be right back. ♪
downtown san jo good morning to you. the time now is 6:36. let's start you off right now with a live look at downtown san jose. so gorgeous. sun is up and lights on the buildings still twinkling. it's a beautiful sunday morning. thank you for spending it with us. i'm vicki nguyen. vianey is standing by with a look at that microclimate forecast. we are hoping for another nice weekend day. >> it's going to be nice but it will be even better because a cooling trend is under way. no more 70s. it will feel more seasonal around here. judging by the early morning temperatures definitely more like winter. look at santa cruz, 38 degrees, mountain view 39, palo alto 38, san francisco 35. the past week we were waking up to 30s and 50s, we are back to
normal now in the 30s for napa as well, 34 degrees, and the temperatureótp2%ujtjáp'ta clara does show a nice climb into the 50s. we are going to see a gp,i(t&há% combination of some sun and clouds, but overall dry conditions are expected for the bay area,ííéy but justl4fp off low. i will talk about who might be seeing some rain coming up at 7:00 a.m. >> well, that is good news, but i will say we did love the 70s while they lasted. >> i did. >> vianey, thank you. san jose's happy hollow zoo is a favorite spot for families but now one mom's social media post has led to stepped up security. it's a story you will see only on nbc bay area. now, this incident happened on thursday as the woman and her toddler walked from the east parking lot to the pedestrian bridge. the woman says a homeless man made sexually suggestive comments to her and talked about kidnapping. now, happy hollow has a parking lot monitor on patrol who is in communication with police and park rangers.
sjpd will also step up$e its patrols aroundti parking lot. >> it's a place that we bring our families to and we don't want to feel like this is another place we can't go. >> the lot is near what used to be a massive homeless encampment called the jungle. the man who approached the woman has been banned from the park and if he returns he could be arrested. people living near dolores park are worried that it is becoming a victim of its own success. the sunny weather this week has sent huge crowds to soak in the sun ever since a major renovation the san francisco park has become more popular than ever, but it is also attracting some trouble. there have been a few shootings there and people often leave a lot of trash behind. neighbors spent the day passing out garbage bags and collecting sis tour. they want the city to deaf vote extra resources to the park to help keep it clean. >> this is a beautiful park, it's a jewel of the city, it's a tourist destination, it brings in a lot of business to the
neighborhood, it increases the values of the neighborhood. why would we not take care of the park? >> two park rangers and a pair of police officers have been assigned daily duty at dolores park. residents say they are hoping the city's parks department can help with cleanup on those busy days. coming up this morning on "today in the bay," the weather in south korea forcing local athletes to wait their turn. one athlete's mom tells us why that is a good thing. we will have that plus all of your top stories and more olympics news coming up at 7:00. for now we will send you back to the "today" show with willie dwoois.
♪ a beautiful shot tonight of medals plaza here in pyeongchang, south korea, of the olympic winter games. there are 232 athletes here pyeongchang. everyone has an amazing story how they got to the stop of their story. extraordinary dedication from a young age. a fearlessness most of us don't possess. perseverance through the frustration and dream of to stop atop the podium as the national anthem plays. the story of ski jumper sarah hendrickson has all of those elements and more. it also includes a fight just to get in the games.
sarah and i got together on a cold night here in pyeongchang for a "sunday sitdown." ♪ ♪ >> there are few places in sports more terrifying than the top of a 400-foot high ski jump. but sarah hendrickson lives for the feeling. what's it like to sit at the top of that ramp? because i'll never do it. what does it feel like? >> i just love coming in the ski jumps. i've taken like 15,000 jumps in my life. i've never had fear. even when i was little starting out, i always loved it. i wanted to go bigger. >> there's first day of skiing, hi, sarah. >> reporter: the 23-year-old hendrickson was only 2 when she learned to ski and 7 when she discovered the thrill of jumping after watching the 2002 salt lake city olympics in her backyard. raised in park city utah, and
train ted facility there, hendrickson travels down an ice track at 60 miles an hour before taking flight. >> how many seconds is it? >> about three seconds. >> three seconds of flight. and you're up there, and you're almost perfectly still. what does it feel like? >> peacefulness, but that feeling that time stops. and you actually have time to have thoughts in the air. which is so crazy. >> really. what are you thinking about, in those three seconds? >> i mean, technical things, but also you can move your hands and feel the effect that it has on the air and the wind and move your skis a little bit. and i mean, it's just really cool to feel the reaction that it has in flight. >> when she lands, sarah has traveled about the length of 1 1/2 football fields. hendrickson broke into the world championship ranks in 2013 at age 19. she won 9 out of the 13 competitions. and was named world champion that year. fresh off her title, sarah was
soaring toward the 2014 olympics in sochi, russia. but just six months before the games she crashed during a jump in germany and tore the acl in her right knee. what did it feel like to go down with that knee injury so close to the thing that you worked your whole life for? >> it was devastating. i think that's the best word to describe it. and everything kind of flashed before my eyes. >> compounding her frustration was the fact that the sochi games were historic in her sport. after a long battle, 2014 was the first time women were allowed to compete in olympic ski jumping. >> it was traditionally, a male sport. females were just not really allowed to do it. they were told no, no, no. >> ioc argued women's ski jumping was not practiced widely enough around the world. one ski official even made a 1950s era argument that the sport was dangerous from a women's reproductionive system.
>> it's like jumping down from let's say about two meters on the ground which seems not to be appropriate for the ladies from a medical point of view. >> so, the stars of sport, including hendrickson fought in the courts to be allowed in the all-boys club. finally in 2011, the national olympic committee agreed. >> the women's ski jumping. >> heading into the sochi games hendrickson was injured but determined. through grueling physical therapy, she made it to russia and competed but she couldn't trust her knee. >> i kind of had a talk with myself that it wasn't reality to win a medal anymore. so i kind of accepted that. >> hendrickson was given bib number one in sochi. and became the first woman ever to compete in a ski event. >> a remarkable comeback. >> she made history but with a bum knee she finished in 21st
place. >> i walked away from sochi disappointed and upset. and when you win so frequently, that's all you want to do after you've been done. back home in utah after the game, sarah needed more surgery to clear out scar tissue in that knee. the next year, she was back in form, but then during training in the summer of 2015, hendrickson fell and tore the acl again. >> it was again, just devastation. like what am i doing wrong type thing. >> so, were you thinking at that point, maybe korea is off the table as well? >> you know, that kind of goes through the back of your head. but there was something inside of me that i knew i wasn't done, i still had more to give to the sport. set my sights on korea again and just worked my butt off to get back here. ♪ >> i know you have a clear mind when you set up. is that the win thing that could be in your head if you were still injured, like is my knee going to hang in there for me? >> that trust is something that can go away quite quickly when you have a recurring injury,
your surgeons, your pts tell you it's truth, and then it fails again. and that's really hard to retrust. in the past six to eight months i've really started to trust my knee again and that's life changing. >> and you feel 100% going into your jump on monday? >> i do feel 100%. >> hendrickson's boyfriends is olympic skier torin yater-wallace krconsidered to b the best in the world. when hendrickson was recovering from her knee, yater-wallace same down with a serious infection and had to be placed in a medically induced coma. >> doctors ka s came in and sai may not make it. injury is one thing, but an illness, we're stronger because of it. >> you all recovered together, right, you had the knee injury and he was getting better
himself? >> it was the longest two-month date we've ever had. >> it sounds like a terrible date. >> you know, it was the best you can make of those types of times to be next to each other. >> now, they're both in pyeongchang, looking for gold. on monday, hendrickson will be back on the top of that, this time, healthy and ready to go. what are your expectations here? >> oh, man, i dream about a medal every day. again, i don't want to walk away disappointed. i've worked way too hard to be here two a two-time olympian. >> but you wouldn't turn away a medal if they gave you one? >> absolutely. on those hard days that's what you dream about and it motivates you. >> what kind of impact did sarah and her teammates have. according to usa nordic there's been a 35% participation in youth participation in ski jumping in the last couple of years driven primarily by young girls. you heard sarah said she's healthy and ready to go for
tomorrow's individual world competition. you watch her fly at 3:00 eastern, noon pacific on nbc. to hear more, check out the web extras @today.com/sunday. and next sunday, a "sunday sitdown" with jamie anderson, a champion in snow boardsing slopestyle, how that gold medal four years ago changed her life. and why she says even with an impressive group of new talent she's still what she calls the we've got some 30s and 40s right now. healdsburg looking beautiful, we are expecting another gorgeous day, but we have a cooling air mass and that's what's bringing a lot of these 30s in the bay area. palo alto right now waking up to 38 degrees, hayward 45, mountain view 39, napa 34 degrees and we can expect to see a much cooler afternoon.
your santa clara temperature trend climbing to 59 degrees by 11:00 a.m. and if i fast forward that timeline through 1:00 we will top out in the 60s. next on "sunday today" from pyeongchang, tom brokaw joins us with a story from the korean war. an american soldier turned politician, still grappling with all that happened on this peninsula nearly seven decades ago. ago. ♪ ♪ ♪ ago. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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welcome back to pyeongchang, in the years after world war ii, the korean peninsula was divided at the 38th parallel. with the soviets controlling the north and the united states backing the south. on june 25th, 1950 communist forces from the north invaded south korea, setting off the korean war. ten days later american troops were on the ground fighting, among them a future congressman and presidential candidate. in our sunday spotlight tom brokaw catches up with an old friend still living with the memories of what happened in korea some 65 years ago. >> he is 90 now, and spends his days in his orange and olive groves in northern california, a stanford man with a law degree, a mavericks repetition, and a chest full of medals. how he got here is an american saga of the second half of the 20th century. peet mccloskey was -- he
challenged richard nixon for the gop presidential nomination. who is this brash newcomer, a republican, who hated the vietnam war? mccloskey learned about war the hard way, in korea, becoming a marine officer before the war began. >> we wanted to be like the greatest generation. and so we didn't think we were going to go to war. suddenly the war starts. somehow they thought we knew something. none of us reserves who went over there as replacements were proud. >> were you prepared what you saw once you hit the ground? >> no. you feel very humble, and you just hope that -- it isn't a matter of courage. it's a matter of not wanting other marines to see that you're incompetent or scared to death. all of these guys were killed or wounded. >> mccloskey and his college
pals were thrown into a war that was face to face combat against hordes of north koreans and chinese, in brutal conditions, none so brutal as the day 20 marines were ordered to take a steep hill held by 200 enemy troops. >> down on us comes this hail of hand grenades. we got within 30 yards and fixed bayonets. i get there first, a guy jumps out with a bayonet on the hill, 500 yards away they saw me throw him over my head, bayonet. i looked down in this trench and i'm looking into the faces of maybe a dozen kids. >> that moment, when you had to unload your automatic weapon on all those kids who were trying to get you with your hand grenades, has it ever left you? >> it did for some years, about ten, 20 years ago i started
having dreams about looking down on them. these faces were all fearful. here they are, here i am with an automatic weapon. they're helpless, couldn't do a thing. they're scared. the fear in those faces has stayed with me. >> those face to face, kill or be killed experiences so haunted him mccloskey went to pyongyang in 2014 and found a north korean general who had fought in the same battles. the north korean was wary until -- >> i said about yangu. he was wounded there. i said so was i. we finally embraced, stepped back and saluted each other. and our last words, we agreed that we didn't want our grandchildren ever to fight in another war. i hope they didn't behead him for talking with me after i left. >> mccloskey's bravery her
honored him the navy cross and silver star, two of the highest commendations. the hills around his arm echo those around the korean peninsula, sharing the same latitude, the 38th parallel. >> do you think we can resolve the standoff between the united states and north korea, in a way that is short of war? >> i think if we will stand back and let the north koreans and the south koreans talk, because they're all one country. they want to reunite their country -- >> tom brokaw reporting. tom, thank you. next on "sunday today," the american olympian in pyeongchang whose family's skiing dynasty began in the backyard. >> it's what we lack in vertical feet and terrain, we make up for in our racing kind of spirit. and later, a life well lived, the american sprinter who returned from world war ii to
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american downhill skier here in pyeongchang began on a hill in his family's backyard. actually it began in 1961 when this grandfather went out back and started cutting down trees to make a ski slope for his kids. it's still there today. on our "sunday closer," nbc's kristen dahlgren is there are when ryan siegel take's sport's biggest stage in south koreaing it will be with a much smaller hill on his heart. when i think of mountains churning out olympians, this is not what comes to mind. >> it's definitely small. it's what we lack in vertical terrain we make up with it in our racing spirit. >> reporter: we caught up with ryan in cochrans. a step of a slope in one of the most storied history. built by mickey cochrane, a former school teacher who in the 1960s had a dream.
a ski hill in his backyard. >> you just come home from work, go out and start cutting down trees. by february of the next year, he had built it. >> reporter: he added lights. and after school, the cochran kids and whoever wanted to join were skiing. >> they'd be out there from 6:30 to 9:00. >> reporter: while the idea wasn't to make olympians. >> it never really mattered if we were the best in the competition itself. but he just wanted us to learn to do our best. >> reporter: ryan's mom barbara ann and her siblings all raced in the olympics. barbara ann winning the gold in 1962. several others have trained here. >> what's in the water out who are? >> reporter: one thing is determination, mickey's grandson robby fell just shy of the finish line last year, he climbed back up the hill to finish. the crowd went mild.
today, cochran's ski area is a nonprofit, to fill ulfilling on more of cochran's dreams. >> we're middle class america. skiing was becoming more and more expensive. mom and dad wanted to provide opportunities for families to ski at an affordable price. >> reporter: on friday night, lift tickets still just five bucks. local school children come here for gym class. and these slopes might see a future champion. like mickey's great grandson charlie, just 5 and already fast. how fast do you go down that hill? >> i don't know, probably about 100 miles an hour. >> reporter: 100 miles an hour? >> maybe 80. >> reporter: 80, that's still fast. everyone here feels like a champion and part of the family, something mickey cochrane would have been proud of. and that is pure gold. for "sunday today," kristen dahlgren, richmond, vermont.
>> what a family. kristen, thank you very much. you can catch the latest olympic product to come off that back hill slope ryan cochran siegel right here on nbc. this week, we highlight another life well lived and another american olympic champion, cliff borland won a gold medal at the 1948 london olympics. running the second leg of the united states 4 by 400 meter replay team and did it after returning from world war ii. born in los angeles on new year's day 1921, borland was the 1938 l.a. city champ in the 400/40-yard dash. he was the north korea 4.40 champ in 1942 and 1943. and the captain of the trojans 1943 national championship team. like so many athletes in their
primes at the time borland left for world war ii, where he served in okinawa, japan, as the captain of a naval craft. when boreland got home, he began again. cliff borland who had been america's oldest living looking for balance in your digestive system? try align probiotic. for a non-stop, sweet treat goodness, hold on to your tiara kind of day.
singles luge. his first olympics and first medal. congratulations to you, chris. let's take a quick look at what's next this week. on monday, president trump releases his 2019 proposal. it's reported to be a request for the $3 million payment on the border wall. the same day the administration is expected to unveil an infrastructure spending pack avenue $1.5 trillion. friday, the highly anticipated "black panther" will hit the movies. "black panther" getting big early reviews. expect big business at the box office. and a great lineup on the nbc family of networks starting with ski skating and the biathlon. and mikaela shiffrin in women's slalom. and jamie anderson and team figure skating at 7:00 p.m.
bay bridge from e good sunday morning to you, it is 7:00. we want to start you off with a wide look outside right now. that is the bay bridge from our camera in emeryville. such a picture post ward view there on this sunday, february 11th. good morning, thank you so much for waking up with us, i'm vicky nguyen, vianey arana is standing by with a look at that microclimate forecast. you told us there was a little bit of a cooldown possibly. >> it's a little chilly. vicky and i were saying you actually enjoyed this. >> i loved it. >> i think most people did. the only downfall from the 70s and no rain means we get dry conditions. we did have that wind adviser in place yesterday, that wind adviser has now expired, it expired at midnight. we're expecting another calm afternoon. right now the temperes