tv NBC Nightly News NBC August 23, 2015 6:30pm-7:01pm EDT
on this sunday night, warning signs? new details about the gunman's past and alleged ties to extremists as all three americans speak out for the first time today about how they took the suspect down. hot zone. more than a million acres now scorched in the pacific northwest as fire fighters continue their battle against those raging ldfires. we're on the front line. disaster in the sky. the death toll rises in that uk air show disaster on the heels of another deadly accident in the sky today. wild ride. overseas markets opening for the first time since the dow plunged more than 1,000 points last week. are we in for another freefall on wall street? and show of faith. president jimmy carter's sunday school message just days after
receiving treatment for the cancer that's now spread to his brain. "nightly news" begins now. from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news." reporting tonight, erica hill. >> quick thinking and gut instinct getting the credit tonight as the three americans who helped tackle a gunman on board a paris-pound train described in detail together for the first time how they were able to subdue the shooter. a man we're learning was known to three european countries the prompting at least one warning to french officials about possible extremist ties. kelly cobiella has our details tonight. kelly, good evening. >> reporter: good evening to you. these three americans all in their early 20s started their trip on a different part of the train because they couldn't find their ticketed seats. this all could have ended much differently had they nod moved before the attacker started
shooting, and they say the gunman never said a word during the struggle. the man tied up and stripped of an ak-47, a pistol, a blade and a bag of ammunition by three americans friday is ayoub el khazzani, belgium's chief prosecutor told nbc news, a 26-year-old from morocco who had lived in the spanish port city with his parents. he played football and went fishing. he was a normal kid this, iman said you can and he prayed at all the mosques. spanish authorities say el khazzani was arrested at least once for drugs and french officials were once warned about ties to islamic extremists and he was also known in belgium and germany. today a lawyer who represented el khazzani during his first few hours in police custody said he swore he's not a terrorist and claimed he only wanted to rob passengers on the train after
finding a bag with the guns in a park. u.s. airman spencer stone was the first to tackle the gunman. today for the first time he talked about how it happened at a press conference with his childhood friends alek skarlatos. >> it was a long story but alek grabbed the gun out of his hand and i put him in a choke hold. seemed like he kept pulling more weapons left and right. all three of us started punching us while he was in the middle of us. >> reporter: stone said he choked the suspect until he lost consciousness, that's stone with a cut on his neck helping a passenger who also had a neck wound. >> from the beginning it was mostly just gut instinct. >> i saw spencer get up and alek get up and those are my close friends so i was like i couldn't let them go alone. as for the suspect's claim that he wasn't on board to kill -- >> it doesn't take eight
magazines to rob a train. >> he seemed like he was ready to fight to the end, so -- so were we. >> reporter: today security was stepped up in trains across europe as the investigation expands into spain and belgium. belgian officials opened their own investigation because the gunman boarded the train in brussels. the chief prosecutor told nbc news they are looking into whether the suspect was part of a broader network, and erica, tomorrow those three americans will be awarded france's highest medal, the legion of honor. erica. >> kelly cobiella for us tonight, kelly, thank you. as authorities continue that investigation overseas officials in this country are also closely monitoring the situation, including the president himself. nbc white house correspondent kristen welker has been traveling with president obama who just wrapped up his vacation in martha's vineyard. kristen, good evening. >> reporter: erica, good evening. that's right. president obama has been monitoring the investigation into the french train attack while vacationing here on
martha's vineyard receiving regular briefings. a senior administration official says u.s. law enforcement and intelligence officials will work in coordination with their french counterparts to investigate. officials will compare notes, checking to see if the suspect was in any way known to authorities here. now, the first priority is determining if the attacker had any accomplices to thwart any potential future attacks at home or abroad and then the next step will be determining how a 26-year-old moroccan man might have become radicalized with the intention of killing multiple people. it's not clear whether the suspect has links to isis, but the senior administration official says whether its recent attacks in paris, australia or chattanooga, tennessee, lone wolves are the hardest threat for counterterrorism officials to analyze and control. president obama back home at the white house this evening where he will continue to track the investigation. erica, back to you. >> all right, kristen, thank you. turning now to the deadly fires tearing through the drought-stricken west. tonight, even more resources are being deployed to fight an inferno that is still very much out of control.
n nbc reports from the front lines. >> reporter: with every firestorm the toll is rising. in the pacific northwest over 1 million acres torched, hundreds of homes burned. the government spending $150 million of federal money a week to fight back with everything they have got. air tankers, smoke jumpers and nearly 30,000 crews now out on the line. >> the fire is approaching from that direction, and we're trying to cut it off. >> reporter: tonight after more than a week of battling over 100 fires, in washington thousands are still under evacuation and some have refused to leave their homes. so you guys chose not to evacuate? >> absolutely. >> reporter: why is that? >> i've been taking care of myself all my life. >> reporter: clyde knows resources are stretched thin. he and his neighbor john wayne heinrich have waged the fire rage above their homes.
>> friday night i see several structures burning. pretty sad. >> reporter: while clyde may not be a fire fighter, as a farmer he knows about irrigation. so in the pocket of this drought clyde has become a rain-maker on the outskirts of a massive inferno. >> here it comes. >> reporter: almost like it's raining. >> that's 50, 60 gallons a minute in there, the sprinkler. >> reporter: high winds can turn any condition dangerous at a moment's notice, even for fire fighters like the three that were killed on wednesday trying to escape what has been described as a hellstorm. it's devastated a close community still grieving. >> just losing the firemen, i've lost a fellow officer, a great friend of mine. you don't understand what we give to you when we come in. ♪ >> reporter: and this sunday morning as many search for comfort. >> our hearts are also heavy today. >> reporter: an emotional sermon at the church where fire fighter richard wheeler once attended with his family. >> he was a hero to everyone
here and the rest of the men who died. >> reporter: their congregation now in mourning and praying for an end to the fires. while in the state of washington every available fire fighter called in every piece of equipment sent out. the president declaring a disaster and the governor sending in the national guard and still the fires rage on. nbc news, lake chelan, washington. >> we are tracking two major storm systems on either side of the country tonight. you're looking now at live radar of tropical depression kilo as it makes its way towards hawaii. it is expected to strengthen as it approaches land. meantime in the atlantic tropical storm danny f.its current track holds, storm could make landfall if puerto rico as early as tomorrow night. remnants of danny could hit south florida later in the week. for the first time since revealing details of his cancer diagnosis, former president jimmy carter taught sunday school this morning in his hometown. his message of love and faith
drawing people from around the world. nbc's gabe gutierrez has that story tonight from plains, georgia. >> good morning, everybody. >> good morning! >> reporter: it was the 689th time jimmy carter had taught sunday school, but this lesson was different. >> well, i don't have any other radiation scheduled, but i have four sessions of -- of a supplemental medicine, and it takes about half an hour to get an i.v., so that's enough of that subject. >> reporter: three days after revealing he started treatment for cancer in his brain, today he took on another tough subject, love. >> i would say that just being able to admit you might be mistaken and -- [ laughter ] -- and the other person might be right is a very important aspect of christianity and it's an important aspect of love as well. >> reporter: to hear that message hundreds started lining
up before dawn. >> we admired him as a president, and we wanted to be here. >> it was wonderful to meet a president of the united states of america because i've always wanted to meet one, and it felt very good to meet him. >> reporter: tyler drove here all the way from indiana. >> it's just a once in a lifetime experience to meet him, and hear a former president teach a sunday school. >> reporter: 90-year-old president carter has taught here since he was 18, plains, georgia, where he grew up and his beloved wife roslyn, became a peanut farmer and then the 39th president of the united states. he called that the focal point of his life. >> no matter where we are we always look forward to getting back home to plains. >> reporter: today as he greeted the grateful congregation. >> ohio. >> california. >> just in the middle. >> d.c. >> d.c., i used to live there. >> reporter: and promised to pose for group pictures.
>> if you come up, you know, by yourself, i won't say anything but i'll just wonder why you don't have any friends. [ laughter ] >> reporter: he was a man at peace, a living lesson in humor and faith. so if you have a setback, accept it and analyze how much of it our fault and then set a higher goal than you ever had before and strive for that. >> reporter: after president carter finished the class here at church he led a second one at a high school nearby. he says he plans to keep teaching as long as he can. erica? >> gabe gutierrez for us tonight, gabe, thank you. investors are gearing up for what could be another wild day on wall street falling friday's free fall in the market. stocks plunged over 530 points. that's the largest selloff in years. for more on what you can expect ahead of tomorrow's opening bell, let's bring in now cnbc's sue herera. sue, thanks for being with us tonight. >> pleasure. >> friday's selloff left
investors across the board feeling skittish, as we saw, but as we move into monday is that something we'll see continue? >> i do think investors are nervous. they were nervous on friday, obviously, from that selloff, and it will probably continuing in the early morning hours of wall street. we don't, of course, know how much further the dow might fall, but keep in mind in past crises, a lot of times we get initial early morning selling, but then our market is one of the best in the world, and so investors who are looking for safety in past crises have actually gone into the stock market in the afternoon, so i would not be surprised to see a bit of a turnaround on wall street later in tomorrow's afternoon session. >> one of the things always top of mind once we start talking about market jitters, interest rates and 401(k)s. >> right. >> how much of an impact could friday's and even tomorrow's activities have on both of those? >> interest rates moved lower on friday because, as people moved into safer treasuries, that pushed interest rates down, so i expect interest rates to stay low for some time to come.
one, because of china's economic crisis and the fact that people are moving into our treasury market, but, two, because the u.s. economy's recovery is still a little bit fragile. we're doing better but still have a ways to go. so interest rates from the analysts i've been talking to anyway are expected to remain low for at least the next month or so. now, in terms of 401(k)ese, yes, a number of them probably did take a hit on friday, but if you add to your 401(k) on a regular basis, sometimes you're buying when prices are high and sometimes you're buying when prices are low, so it tends to even out, but if you're nervous about friday's activity, it's a good time to reach out to your financial adviser and make sure that you're tolerance for risk is where it should be in this market. >> sue, nice to have you with us this evening. >> my pleasure. >> we appreciate it, and cnbc will have much more on the turmoil in the markets during a special report airing tonight at 7:00 p.m. a gay couple is at the forefront of the battle for marriage equality tied the knot
this weekend. the women sued the state of michigan for the right to jointly adopt their children and made history when the u.s. supreme court ruled to legalize same-sex marriage this june. the judge who heard their case officiated the ceremony. when "nightly news" continues on this sunday, another air show disaster just one day after a horrific scene unfolded in the uk. tonight, the safety questions being raised. and later, a tourist is and later, a tourist is rescued from the outback i found her wandering miles from home. when the phone rang at 5am, i knew it was about mom. i see how hard it's been on her at work and i want to help. for the 5 million americans living with alzheimer's, and millions more who feel its effects. let's walk together to make an even bigger impact and end alzheimer's for good. find your walk near you at alz.org/walk.
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deadly accident, this time at a different air show. both raising questions about whether the stunts at these shows are simply too dangerous. here's nbc's kristen dahlgren. >> reporter: new pictures of the horrifying moments when the vintage jet flying a loop in an air show crashed into a fireball turning a british highway into something out of a war zone. >> like a bomb had gone off. there was smoke, fire, debris everywhere, you know what i mean, but there was a silence. >> reporter: burning cars and a death toll of 11 that could grow as investigators search through the wreckage and now we're relying on locals to tell us who might have been on this highway on saturday, like soccer players jacob grimm and math two grimstone. today a moment of silence, but also a growing chorus of questions, not just about what went wrong on shore and by sea but about the general safety at
air shows. just this morning another collision. one pilot was killed in an air show in switzerland. a building on the ground left in ruins. on thursday seven died when two planes carrying dozens of parachuteists collided while practicing for an air show in slovakia. others had to jump to safety, and here in the u.s. there have been several accidents in the last few years. in 2013 a wing walker and her pilot died in this fiery crash. in 011 the reno, nevada, air races ended in tragedy when the pilot and ten people in the crowd hit by flying debris were hit by this crash. the faa says it has numerous requirements for safe operation in the u.s., but today at the cam littlio air show in california, yesterday's crash was on the minds of many. >> it's really a matter of keeping the people away. >> reporter: it's off the edge of your seat dajer and thrill that gets people in the stands. >> they are looking for thrills, looking for something that looks like oh, my goodness, how are they going to pull out of that, and sometimes they don't.
>> reporter: witnesses in england say the pilot appeared to be fighting to get control until the end. >> he's flown many, many different types of aircraft for numerous years, and an excellent pilot. >> reporter: but now he's fighting for his life as many are left to wonder when it comes to high-flying stunts how far is too far. kristen dahlgren, nbc news. we are getting late word tonight about an indy car accident as the pocono raceway in indiana. driver justin wilson has been airlifted to a nearby hospital appearing he was struck on a piece of flying debris on the racetrack. no word yet on his condition. still ahead. big news out of mt. evrest. four months after that devastating avalanche and bao people like options. when you take geico, you can call them anytime you feel like saving money. it don't matter, day or night. use your computer, your smartphone, your tablet, whatever. the point is, you have options.
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mt. evrest has reopened for the first time since the maszive earthquake unleashed a massive avalanche on the mountain killing 19 people and putting an end to the popular spring climbing season. a japanese climber will be the first to attempt an ascent and hopes to reach the summit of the world's tallest peak by mid-september. a british tourist who got lost in the australian outback has been found tonight thanks to an s.o.s. message he scrolled in the sand. you can see it there. the 63-year-old tried to take a shortcut back to his camp, lost his way and spent two days wandering without food or shoes. rescuers eventually located him after spotting his message asking for help. usain bolt didn't need any shortcuts to cement his place as the world's fastest man. the 29-year-old james cab sprinter claiming his third 100-meter world title in beijing today. the race came down to the wire
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e finally tonight, a few miles southwest of eau claire, wisconsin, they suddenly appear, thousands upon thousands of sunflowers, turning a strip of highway into a sea of yellow. it's an extraordinary sight, and the story behind it is just as beautiful. we get more on that from boyd hooper of our minneapolis sister station kara. >> reporter: wisconsin state road 85 has always been a pretty drive. but never has it shined like this. >> wow, when you see it. >> reporter: a field of sunflowers is stunning, but south of eau claire both sides of the road stands a sunshine
strip four and a half miles long. >> she's always loved flowers, but sunflowers were her favorite. >> reporter: john jaik planted this as a tribute to babette, the wife he lost last cancer to cancer. >> it fitted her personality. she would walk into a room, and her smile would light up the whole room >> reporter: tribute crosses five farms, neighbors opening up their land. >> they all loved her. she -- there wasn't anybody who ever met her who didn't love her >> reporter: seeds will be harvested and sold to support other cancer patients. >> she was a modest person and i'm not sure she would want her picture on the bag but she's such a beautiful woman. she didn't really know how beautiful she was, inside and out >> reporter: kind of woman who would leave her husband with a letter discovered in a file four months after her death. >> you move on and live each day. feel me in the morning air, and when you wake up and make your
coffee, i will be there always. >> reporter: and for a few splendid days she is also here. >> i couldn't fathom it until i saw it in person how beautiful it was. >> reporter: a gift to a wife and all who see it tied up with a four and a half mile yellow ribbon. >> what we had was as good as it gets. >> reporter: boyd hooper, nbc news, eau claire, wisconsin. >> such a beautiful tribute. that is "nbc nightly news" for this sunday. lester holt will be here tomorrow. i'm erica hill reporting from new york. for all of us here at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. .
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