tv Early Today NBC December 25, 2014 4:00am-4:31am PST
good morning. coming up on "early today," a big storm continues to its push across the country, making it a rough go for last minute holiday travelers. a new ebola scare. we're learning scientists inside the cdc may have been exposed to the lethal virus. how did it happen? christmas in the holy land. celebrations in bethlehem and midnight mass at the vatican with a special message from the pope. we are live this christmas morning. "early today" starts right now. good morning. and merry christmas. i'm ayman mohyeldin. getting home for the holidays has been a big hassle for millions of americans, thanks to
snow, flooding and thunderstorms. according to flight ware.com, more than 13,000 flights had been delayed, and more than 1200 flights canceled nationwide this week alone. so how did last minute travelers fare? here's nbc's chris pollone. >> reporter: at new york's laguardia airport christmas eve, santa and his elves tried to keep holiday spirits bright, serenading travelers with christmas carollers, perhaps distracting them from dreary weather causing flight delays and cancellations. it was windy and wet from maine to florida. by midday, 200 flights across the country had been canceled, more than 1,000 delayed. travelers in new york seem to be taking everything in stride. >> so far it's been great. no problems for us. we're hoping it will continue to be this way. >> reporter: delays were a bit more prevalent in philadelphia where heavy fog slowed takeoffs and landings. >> less crowded than i expected. i was expecting it to be packed. >> reporter: forecasters fear
chicago's o'hare airport could see significant snow, which could snarl air travel across the country. it appears the bulk of the system is heading east of the windy city. in the northwest and rockies, snow is expected to fall on christmas day. with any luck, most christmas travelers will be with family and friends by then, even if the journey took longer than they hoped. chris pollone, nbc news, boston. a new ebola scare at the centers for disease control and prevention in atlanta. according to the cdc, a mistake inside a secure laboratory may have exposed a technician to the virus. that person is being monitored this morning. other staff members who may have had contact with that lab will be screened for exposure. nbc's gabe gutierrez has the latest. >> reporter: an internal investigation is under way at the centers for disease control to find out how one of their workers and possibly more could have been exposed to the deadly ebola virus. the exposure took place monday when scientists researching the virus mistakenly sent a sample from a high-level security lab
to a lower level lab at the cdc. the technician has no symptoms and is being monitored for 21 days. >> you have to get ebola into your body to be infected. it's likely that the risk to the technician was very low. >> reporter: this year the cdc has been under fire. in june more than 80 workers were potentially exposed to anthrax by mistake. the head of that bioterrorism lab later resigned. then u.s. hospitals said agencies recommended protocols for dealing with the ebola virus were unclear, and in congressional hearings cdc director tom frieden admitted the agency made mistakes. in response to the potential ebola exposure, frieden says "i am troubled by this incident and i have directed that there be a full review of every aspect of the incident and that the cdc take all necessary measures." dr. frieden has come under a lot of criticism for the way he's handled the ebola crisis. some critics have said he came across as too confident that ebola wouldn't spread in the
united states and it did. >> reporter: the worst ebola outbreak on record has devastated west africa, killing more than 7500 people. the cdc say it is risk from the latest mistake is low and there is no public threat. the st. louis area is on edge, two days after another black teen was shot and killed by a police officer. last night, dozens of protesters stopped traffic on a highway and some clashed with police officers trying to end their demonstrations. earlier in the evening, the teen's mother joined a candlelight vigil at the gas station where her 18-year-old son was killed. crowds continue to gather there to protest the fatal shooting, but officials in berkeley say this shooting is no ferguson. nbc's john yang has the latest. >> reporter: officials were quick to release security view of the incident. a berkeley police officer investigating a shoplifting report encounters two men. less than a minute later, one of
them, 18-year-old antonio martin, raises his arm, pointing a gun officials say at the officer who quickly backs up. >> the officer produced his service weapon and fired what we think at this point is three shots. >> reporter: one struck martin, killing him. police say they recovered a loaded 9 millimeter gun at the scene and martin had a criminal record. as social media spread word of the shooting, a crowd gathered. a fire cracker was thrown. there were four arrests. >> he's gone. >> reporter: martin's girlfriend and his mother were there. >> trying to get his life back together, trying to get back in school. >> reporter: berkeley mayor theodore hoskins stated emphatically this is not ferguson. >> here in berkeley, if you review the video you'll see that the aggressor was not the police, it was the victim.
>> reporter: other officials agree the two cases are very different, but acknowledge there may be anger and skepticism. >> i'm angry, too. but i have to tell the truth. in this situation there is a young man who illegally possessed a gun. >> reporter: marcus nevilles works at a restaurant across the street and doesn't expect large ferguson-like protests. >> one thing we get to find out what really happened, it will be done and over with. >> that was nbc's john yang reporting. sony pictures says it wasn't giving in to hackers over the release of "the interview." now it is doubling down on that promise. hundreds of movie groeimoviegoe west hollywood theater were among the first to see it. some 200 theaters will screen it. this, just one day after sony
made it available for a fee through google play, youtube, xbox and a separate sony website. the christmas spirit can be felt all around the world this morning. celebrations both large and small are taking place including at the vatican and in the palestinian city of bethlehem. nbc's jim maceda has our report. >> reporter: at the vatican, a solemn midnight mass. pope francis ushering in the holiday that marks the birth of christ for more than 2 billion worshippers worldwide. many in conflict zones. u.s. troops in afghanistan singing by candlelight, and pilgrims to christ's birthplace, bethlehem in the west bank. >> merry christmas. >> reporter: american david bogery came from iowa. >> to proclaim the name of jesus, not to talk politics. >> reporter: but there are tensions here even at christmas.
palestinians in santa costumes protested israeli occupation and scuffled with police. elsewhere, santas were making friends and spreading joy. >> we brought a little bit of christmas to thailand. >> reporter: in bagdad, bringing presents to christian children who fled isis with their families. in france, scene of recent attacks by suspected islamist militants, police tightened security. so has the vatican. at christmas time there is perhaps no more symbolic target for islamist militants than here at st. peter's square. security is on a heightened state of alert given that pope francis himself has been specifically threatened by isis. ♪ >> reporter: but the pope gave no sign of that. his christmas eve message was one of hope, joy and peace. jim maceda, nbc news, the vatican.
just this past hour, pope francis delivered his annual christmas day message at the basilica. he urged people not to be indifferent to the suffering of so many around the world. meteorologist domenica davis is here with your christmas day forecast. good morning, domenica. >> good morning, merry christmas. >> merry christmas. >> not a bad morning out there if you like the snow. to the west, that's where you have a lot of snow coming in from the cascades, right into the rocky mountains. still dealing with rain from seattle, portland, down through medford. the rain we saw yesterday in san francisco, that has ended. is will be a dryer day today. we do have winter weather warnings and advisories that are posted that stretch from montana all the way down into nevada and new mexico. so we are looking at an additional 4 to 6 inches of snow in some cases. good skiing weather. 42 for the high today in medford. still dealing with the rain again from oregon all the way up
through washington. dryer, though, through california today. salt lake city gets the snow, 34 degrees. it will be 39 in denver with plenty of snow. and then more of the same tomorrow, we'll start to see that snow taper off. degrees. and 23 in billings. and that's a look at your christmas day forecast. back to you. >> very promising in some areas. still ahead, an emotional tribute from the families of the two slain nypd officers. plus, how $2 million was accidentally up for grabs in hong kong. you're watching "early today." at panera bread, our hearty all-natural turkey chili is back in season. slow-cooked with turkey raised thout antibiotics, tart tomatillos, chilies, carrots, edamame and more.
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there's no such thing as a little flu. so why treat it like it's a little cold? there's something that works differently than over-the-counter remedies. attack the flu virus at its source with prescription tamiflu. and call your doctor right away. tamiflu is fda approved to treat the flu in people 2 weeks and older whose flu symptoms started within the last two days. before taking tamiflu tell your doctor if you're pregnant, nursing, have serious health conditions, or take other medicines. if you develop an allergic reaction, a severe rash, or signs of unusual behavior, stop taking tamiflu and call your doctor immediately. children and adolescents in particular may be at an increased risk of seizures, confusion or abnormal behavior. the most common side effects are mild to moderate nausea and vomiting. ask your doctor about tamiflu and attack the flu virus at its source. stories making news this morning.
an emotional scene at the memorial for the two slain new york city police officers. both families visited for the first time since saturday's shooting. take a listen to this heartfelt tribute the eldest son of officer rafael ramos gave to his late father. >> knowing that my father was a universally loved man has made the healing process a bit easier for our family. my father was an incredible man, he was a hero. he was an incredible husband to my mother, and he was a really dedicated officer. he truly cared about the people of new york city. former president george h.w. bush remains in a houston hospital this morning for another day of monitoring. he was admitted tuesday night after experiencing shortness of breath. you can call it an unintended christmas gift on a hong kong street yesterday. $2 million spilled out of the security van and dozens of people made a mad dash to get their hands on it. about a dozen of them have since come forward to return close to $500,000.
still $1.5 million missing. officials say a broken back door on the van is to blame for all that. it is the end of a 24-hour scary ordeal for bao bao, the giant panda cub at washington's national zoo. this began on tuesday afternoon when she touched a hot wire. that scared her so much, she climbed to the top of the tree and wouldn't come down. zoo officials say she eventually did come back down on her own, and is now back with her mom. santa is back home in the north pole after delivering all the gifts. first lady michelle obama helped track his trip last night. the white house released this picture showing her answering calls from children as part of the norad program. just ahead, broncos fans will have something to celebrate during the holidays. a star player announces his intentions to return next season. plus, a football fan gets a surprise gift from an nfl player after a chance encounter. sports is next.
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this morning on "today," meet bowen toomey, a very active 5-year-old boy born without arms and legs. now his adoptive family wants to inspire others to adopt special needs children. their amazing story is later on "today". right now to sports action. the inaugural bahamas bowl was a down-to-the-wire thriller.
a record-setting day for central michigan quarterback cooper rush. he threw for seven touchdowns. the chippewas rallied in the fourth after trailing western kentucky by 35 points. after a failed two-point conversion on the last play of the game, western kentucky wins 49-48. in the honolulu bowl rice took on fresno state. rice with a generous lead late in the fourth quarter. they put their smallest player in the ball game, 4'9" running back jay carter who weighs just 140 pounds. he only got one carry, but made it count. rice wins it, 30-6. >> tcu's gary patterson has been named the associated press college football coach of the year, the second time he's won that honor. 38-year-old star quarterback peyton manning squashed potential retirement rumors yesterday telling reporters he plans to be back with the broncos next season. >> i have not thought about
those circumstances at all. so i certainly plan on being back if the broncos will have me. one seahawks fan received a special gift from robert turbin. after meeting turbin's girlfriend when the seahawks played in kansas city, she promised the fan a meet-and-greet that never happened but found a way to make up for it. >> read it. >> it says, hi alex. i'm sorry you weren't able to meet rob back in november. to make up for it, rob was generous enough to get the team to autograph this seahawks helmet. >> a heart warming gift there. might be hard for the family and friends to top, though. just ahead, find out how some
celebrities are celebrating the holiday. plus, trimming the tree, not with ornaments out of a box, but with the community's fondest wishes. you're watching "early today." no matter who you are, if you have type 2 diabetes, you know it can be a struggle to keep your a1c down. so imagine ... what if there was a new class of medicine that works differently to lower blood sugar? imagine loving your numbers. introducing once-daily invokana®. it's the first of a new kind of prescription medicine that's used along with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. invokana® is a once-daily pill that works around the clock to help lower a1c. here's how: the kidneys allow sugar to be absorbed back into the body. invokana® reduces the amount of sugar allowed back in ... and sends some sugar out through the process of urination. and while it's not for weight loss, it may help you lose some weight. invokana® can cause important side effects, including dehydration, which may cause some
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imagine loving your numbers. ask your doctor about invokana®. dave, i'm sorry to interrupt... i gotta take a sick day tomorrow. dads don't take sick days, dads take nyquil. the nighttime, sniffling, sneezing, coughing, aching, fever, best sleep with a cold, medicine. why do i cook for the to share with family to carry on traditions to come together, even when we're apart in stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, and more, swanson® makes holiday dishes delicious! merry christmas and welcome back to "early today." we're talking snow out to the west, still dealing with winter weather warnings and advisories that are posted through the cascades and into the rockies. so 4 to 6 inches of snow.
that will be on tap for christmas. and the snow certainly is already coming down. salt lake city a high today of 34. they're definitely in the snow zone through tomorrow as well. if you try down to the south, we are picking up on a little bit of rain through san diego. one place is going to be dry is los angeles. plenty of sunshine with temperatures staying in the 60s. nice, warm christmas for them. wouldn't that be nice to be there? >> you know, snow in some parts, sun in other parts, the perfect christmas, right? >> yes. >> now for entertainment news. here is how some of our favorite celebrities are celebrating the holidays. neal patrick harris took to twitter last night to write merry christmas eve he said. hope your night is filled with love, whether it be by romance, friendship or random circumstance. 'tis the season. singer taylor swift tweeted, my dad gave me ten lint rollers for christmas, not for lint, but because you always have glitter all over you. "hunger games" actress jennifer lawrence spent christmas eve at
a children's hospital in her hometown of louisville, kentucky. she tweeted this photo meeting several young patients. "e news" host giuliana rancic instagramed this photo of herself shopping in chicago on christmas eve. and katie couric with santa in aspen, colorado, last night. and president obama tweeted this picture of the first family meeting a group of young elves. the president wrote, say hello to friends you know and everyone you meet. >> what did you tweet? >> i haven't tweeted anything. it has been a quiet day for me in the christmas eve spirit. what about you? >> no, i didn't tweet either. we're terrible. >> yeah, we'll get on it today. i'm ayman mohyeldin. this is "early today." we hope it is your first stop of the day here on nbc news. is a really big deal.u
with aches, fever and chills- there's no such thing as a little flu. so why treat it like it's a little cold? there's something that works differently than over-the-counter remedies. attack the flu virus at its source with prescription tamiflu. and call your doctor right away. tamiflu is fda approved to treat the flu in people 2 weeks and older whose flu symptoms started within the last two days. before taking tamiflu tell your doctor if you're pregnant, nursing, have serious health conditions, or take other medicines. if you develop an allergic reaction, a severe rash, or signs of unusual behavior, stop taking tamiflu and call your doctor immediately. children and adolescents in particular may be at an increased risk of seizures, confusion or abnormal behavior. the most common side effects are mild to moderate nausea and vomiting. ask your doctor about tamiflu and attack the flu virus at its source.
welcome back on this christmas morning. there was a tree that grows in san francisco, and on it this time of year the branches are filled with the hopes and dreams of those who pay it a visit. those hopes are often not about the gifts that we pressure ourselves to purchase for one another. many of them are about the things money cannot buy. the story now from nbc's harry smith. >> reporter: there's not much to it really, yet every day after school, kids stop by to fill out tags and read the ones left behind. >> this one says "i wish for food for everyone". >> reporter: it's a wishing tree, started four years ago by. vanessa sabarese because, quite frankly, the holidays were getting her down. >> i wanted to do something around this time of year that
changed how i felt, because it wasn't something i looked forward to. >> reporter: now the whole neighborhood looks forward to december. the act of writing down a wish is kind of liberating. there are no secrets on a wishing tree. >> i wish for lavender because it smells nice. >> i wish for people to have a roof over their head and food to eat. >> i wish for a real puppy. >> reporter: wishing doesn't cost a thing, except, perhaps, your skepticism. a lot of times in life you don't get everything you wish to for, so maybe the lesson is -- >> it's okay to wish. i guess that's a really cool lesson. >> even if you're old. >> yeah. >> reporter: as the days grow shorter, the victorian box tree gets loaded with more and more wishes. and sometimes people like leslie deanahan stop by. >> saw the wishing tree. perfect timing, our dog is having surgery. >> reporter: lesley and her husband feared their dog kobe
had cancer. >> he's the one we made our wish true. that wish came true. >> oh, i i remember! >> reporter: in the evening breeze the wishes dangle and spin. it makes you think something special is going on here. >> i get hope. i get inspiration, and i get love. >> reporter: inspiration, hope, love, more than most of us would ever wish for. but if we did, it makes you wonder. harry smith, nbc news, san francisco. >> what a beautiful scene there. celebrating birthdays on this christmas day, singer annie lennox turns 60 today. academy award winning actress sissy spacek is 65. and jimmy buffett is 68. hopefully he's having a cheeseburger in paradise. i'm ayman mohyeldin. thanks for watching "early today." have a terrific holiday, everyone.
a fire, and not the first time the firefighters have been at this house. and a look at the people giving of themselves to make the holiday special for thousands of the bay's special. let's take a live look at look feller center in new york, all lit up as the crowd is ready to come out and celebrate this national holiday. it is thursday, december 25th, christmas. you're watching "today in the bay."